Bayesian Hierarchical Modeling for Subject‐level Response Classification in Peptide Microarray Immunoassays

Imholte et al., Biometrics (2016) - PMID: 27061097

Product(s) used in this publication:  PepStar™ Peptide Microarrays


The peptide microarray immunoassay simultaneously screens sample serum against thousands of peptides, determining the presence of antibodies bound to array probes. Peptide microarrays tiling immunogenic regions of pathogens (e.g., envelope proteins of a virus) are an important high throughput tool for querying and mapping antibody binding. Because of the assay's many steps, from probe synthesis to incubation, peptide microarray data can be noisy with extreme outliers. In addition, subjects may produce different antibody profiles in response to an identical vaccine stimulus or infection, due to variability among subjects' immune systems. We present a robust Bayesian hierarchical model for peptide microarray experiments, pepBayes, to estimate the probability of antibody response for each subject/peptide combination. Heavy-tailed error distributions accommodate outliers and extreme responses, and tailored random effect terms automatically incorporate technical effects prevalent in the assay. We apply our model to two vaccine trial data sets to demonstrate model performance. Our approach enjoys high sensitivity and specificity when detecting vaccine induced antibody responses. A simulation study shows an adaptive thresholding classification method has appropriate false discovery rate control with high sensitivity, and receiver operating characteristics generated on vaccine trial data suggest that pepBayes clearly separates responses from non-responses.

© 2016, The International Biometric Society.


Bayesian hierarchical model; Classification; Mixture modeling; Peptide microarray

Stay in touch and be the first to receive the latest news!