PT - JOURNAL ARTICLE
AU - Saulsbury, James G.
TI - Permutation tests for comparative data
AID - 10.1101/2020.10.24.325472
DP - 2020 Jan 01
TA - bioRxiv
PG - 2020.10.24.325472
4099 - http://biorxiv.org/content/early/2020/10/26/2020.10.24.325472.short
4100 - http://biorxiv.org/content/early/2020/10/26/2020.10.24.325472.full
AB - The analysis of patterns in comparative data has come to be dominated by least-squares regression, mainly as implemented in phylogenetic generalized least-squares (PGLS). This approach has two main drawbacks: it makes relatively restrictive assumptions about distributions and can only address questions about the conditional mean of one variable as a function of other variables. Here I introduce two new non-parametric constructs for the analysis of a broader range of comparative questions: phylogenetic permutation tests, based on cyclic permutations and permutations conserving phylogenetic signal. The cyclic permutation test, an extension of the restricted permutation test that performs exchanges by rotating nodes on the phylogeny, performs well within and outside the bounds where PGLS is applicable but can only be used for balanced trees. The signal-based permutation test has identical statistical properties and works with all trees. The statistical performance of these tests compares favorably with independent contrasts and surpasses that of a previously developed permutation test that exchanges closely related pairs of observations more frequently. Three case studies illustrate the use of phylogenetic permutations for quantile regression with non-normal and heteroscedastic data, testing hypotheses about morphospace occupation, and comparative problems in which the data points are not tips in the phylogeny.Competing Interest StatementThe authors have declared no competing interest.