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Interpretation of interactions: guide for the perplexed

  • Kenneth S. Kendler (a1) and Charles O. Gardner (a2)

Summary

In this issue, Zammit et al explore how five dichotomised risk factors work together to predict risk for non-affective psychosis in a large Swedish cohort. In this editorial, we review these findings, and comment on both the nature of additive v. multiplicative models and the meaning of statistical interactions.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

Dr Kenneth S. Kendler, Psychiatric Genetics Research Program, Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics, 800 East Leigh Street, Room 1-122, PO Box 980126, Richmond, VA 23298-0126, USA. Email: kendler@hsc.vcu.edu

Footnotes

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See pp. 207–211, this issue

Declaration of interest

None.

Footnotes

References

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1 Zammit, S, Lewis, G, Dalman, C, Allebeck, P. Examining interactions between risk factors for psychosis. Br J Psychiatry 2010; 196: 207–11.
2 Risch, N, Herrell, R, Lehner, T, Liang, KY, Eaves, L, Hoh, J, et al. Interaction between the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR), stressful life events, and risk of depression: a meta-analysis. JAMA 2009; 301: 2462–71.
3 Caspi, A, Hariri, AR, Holmes, A, Uher, R, Moffitt, TE. Genetic sensitivity to the environment: the case of the serotonin transporter gene and its implications for studying complex diseases and traits. Am J Psychiatry 2010; 167: 509–27.
4 Everitt, BS. The Cambridge Dictionary of Statistics (2nd edn). Cambridge University Press, 2002.
5 Allison, PD. Comparing logit and probit coefficients across groups. Sociol Methods Res 1999; 28: 186208.
6 Eaves, LJ. Genotype x Environment interaction in psychopathology: fact or artifact? Twin Res Hum Genet 2006; 9: 18.
7 Rothman, KJ, Greenland, S, Lash, TL. Modern Epidemiology (3rd edn). Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2008.
8 Kendler, KS, Kessler, RC, Walters, EE, MacLean, C, Neale, MC, Heath, AC, et al. Stressful life events, genetic liability, and onset of an episode of major depression in women. Am J Psychiatry 1995; 152: 833–42.

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Interpretation of interactions: guide for the perplexed

  • Kenneth S. Kendler (a1) and Charles O. Gardner (a2)
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