Estimation of Transition Probabilities in Animal Carcinogenicity Experiments


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This paper discusses estimation of the tumor incidence rate, the death rate given tumor is present and the death rate given tumor is absent using a discrete multistage model. The model was originally proposed by Dewanji and Kalbfleisch (1986) and the maximum likelihood estimate of the tumor incidence rate was obtained using EM algorithm. In this paper, we use a reparametrization to simplify the estimation procedure. The resulting estimates are not always the same as the maximum likelihood estimates but are asymptotically equivalent. In addition, an explicit expression for asymptotic variance and bias of the proposed estimators is also derived. These results can be used to compare efficiency of different sacrifice schemes in carcinogenicity experiments.

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