The development of statistical approaches for the joint modelling of the temporal changes of imaging, biochemical, and clinical biomarkers is of paramount importance for improving the understanding of neurodegenerative disorders, and for providing a reference for the prediction and quantification of the pathology in unseen individuals. Nonetheless, the use of disease progression models for probabilistic predictions still requires investigation, for example for accounting for missing observations in clinical data, and for accurate uncertainty quantification. We tackle this problem by proposing a novel Gaussian process-based method for the joint modeling of imaging and clinical biomarker progressions from time series of individual observations. The model is formulated to account for individual random effects and time reparameterization, allowing non-parametric estimates of the biomarker evolution, as well as high flexibility in specifying correlation structure, and time transformation models. Thanks to the Bayesian formulation, the model naturally accounts for missing data, and allows for uncertainty quantification in the estimate of evolutions, as well as for probabilistic prediction of disease staging in unseen patients. The experimental results show that the proposed model provides a biologically plausible description of the evolution of Alzheimer’s pathology across the whole disease time-span as well as remarkable predictive performance when tested on a large clinical cohort with missing observations.
Disease progression modeling and prediction through random effect Gaussian processes and time transformation
Submitted to ArXiV; January 7, 2017
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