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Covariate-assisted ranking and screening for large-scale two-sample inference

  • Author(s): Cai, T. Tony
  • Sun, Wenguang
  • Wang, Weinan
  • et al.

Two-sample multiple testing has a wide range of applications. The conventionalpractice first reduces the original observations to a vector of p-values and then chooses a cutoffto adjust for multiplicity. However, this data reduction step could cause significant loss ofinformation and thus lead to suboptimal testing procedures.We introduce a new framework fortwo-sample multiple testing by incorporating a carefully constructed auxiliary variable in inferenceto improve the power. A data-driven multiple-testing procedure is developed by employinga covariate-assisted ranking and screening (CARS) approach that optimally combines the informationfrom both the primary and the auxiliary variables. The proposed CARS procedureis shown to be asymptotically valid and optimal for false discovery rate control. The procedureis implemented in the R package CARS. Numerical results confirm the effectiveness of CARSin false discovery rate control and show that it achieves substantial power gain over existingmethods. CARS is also illustrated through an application to the analysis of a satellite imagingdata set for supernova detection.

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