In this article, we present a flexible model for microbiome count data. We consider a quasi-likelihood framework, in which we do not make any assumptions on the distribution of the microbiome count except that its variance is an unknown but smooth function of the mean. By comparing our model to the negative binomial generalized linear model (GLM) and Poisson GLM in simulation studies, we show that our flexible quasi-likelihood method yields valid inferential results. Using a real microbiome study, we demonstrate the utility of our method by examining the relationship between adenomas and microbiota. We also provide an R package “fql” for the application of our method.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Statistics and Probability