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Semiparametric Models for Longitudinal Data with Application to CD4 Cell Numbers in HIV Seroconverters

Scott L. Zeger and Peter J. Diggle
Biometrics
Vol. 50, No. 3 (Sep., 1994), pp. 689-699
DOI: 10.2307/2532783
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2532783
Page Count: 11
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Semiparametric Models for Longitudinal Data with Application to CD4 Cell Numbers in HIV Seroconverters
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Abstract

The paper describes a semiparametric model for longitudinal data which is illustrated by its application to data on the time evolution of CD4 cell numbers in HIV seroconverters. The essential ingredients of the model are a parametric linear model for covariate adjustment, a nonparametric estimation of a smooth time trend, serial correlation between measurements on an individual subject, and random measurement error. A back-fitting algorithm is used in conjunction with a cross-validation prescription to fit the model. A notable feature in the application is that the onset of HIV infection is associated with a sudden drop in CD4 cells followed by a longer-term slower decay. The model is also used to estimate an individual's curve by combining his data with the population curve. Shrinkage toward the population mean trajectory is controlled in a natural way by the estimated covariance structure of the data.

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