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Properties of Monotonic Effects on Directed Acyclic Graphs

Tyler J. VanderWeele, James M. Robins; 10(24):699−718, 2009.


Various relationships are shown hold between monotonic effects and weak monotonic effects and the monotonicity of certain conditional expectations. Counterexamples are provided to show that the results do not hold under less restrictive conditions. Monotonic effects are furthermore used to relate signed edges on a causal directed acyclic graph to qualitative effect modification. The theory is applied to an example concerning the direct effect of smoking on cardiovascular disease controlling for hypercholesterolemia. Monotonicity assumptions are used to construct a test for whether there is a variable that confounds the relationship between the mediator, hypercholesterolemia, and the outcome, cardiovascular disease.

© JMLR 2009. (edit, beta)