Robust volcano plot: Identification of differential metabolites in the presence of outliers

Nishith Kumar, Md Aminul Hoque, Masahiro Sugimoto

研究成果: Article査読

21 被引用数 (Scopus)


Background: The identification of differential metabolites in metabolomics is still a big challenge and plays a prominent role in metabolomics data analyses. Metabolomics datasets often contain outliers because of analytical, experimental, and biological ambiguity, but the currently available differential metabolite identification techniques are sensitive to outliers. Results: We propose a kernel weight based outlier-robust volcano plot for identifying differential metabolites from noisy metabolomics datasets. Two numerical experiments are used to evaluate the performance of the proposed technique against nine existing techniques, including the t-test and the Kruskal-Wallis test. Artificially generated data with outliers reveal that the proposed method results in a lower misclassification error rate and a greater area under the receiver operating characteristic curve compared with existing methods. An experimentally measured breast cancer dataset to which outliers were artificially added reveals that our proposed method produces only two non-overlapping differential metabolites whereas the other nine methods produced between seven and 57 non-overlapping differential metabolites. Conclusion: Our data analyses show that the performance of the proposed differential metabolite identification technique is better than that of existing methods. Thus, the proposed method can contribute to analysis of metabolomics data with outliers. The R package and user manual of the proposed method are available at

ジャーナルBMC bioinformatics
出版ステータスPublished - 2018 4月 11

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • 構造生物学
  • 生化学
  • 分子生物学
  • コンピュータ サイエンスの応用
  • 応用数学


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