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BioMed Research International
Volume 2015, Article ID 670691, 13 pages
Review Article

Statistical Methods for Establishing Personalized Treatment Rules in Oncology

Department of Biostatistics, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Unit 1411, 1400 Pressler Street, Houston, TX 77030, USA

Received 25 November 2014; Accepted 9 February 2015

Academic Editor: Aurelio Ariza

Copyright © 2015 Junsheng Ma et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The process for using statistical inference to establish personalized treatment strategies requires specific techniques for data-analysis that optimize the combination of competing therapies with candidate genetic features and characteristics of the patient and disease. A wide variety of methods have been developed. However, heretofore the usefulness of these recent advances has not been fully recognized by the oncology community, and the scope of their applications has not been summarized. In this paper, we provide an overview of statistical methods for establishing optimal treatment rules for personalized medicine and discuss specific examples in various medical contexts with oncology as an emphasis. We also point the reader to statistical software for implementation of the methods when available.