Systematic Error and Confounding: Meta-Analyses of Alcohol and Disease

2011-2014
Principal Investigator: Kaye Fillmore, PhD
Supported by a grant from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

When systematic errors of bias and confounding are repeated across multiple epidemiological studies, such errors may lead to false conclusions (1). This project addresses both sources of bias and confounding in cohort and case-control studies of association between alcohol use and a range of sentinel diseases. Such errors obscure scientific understanding of alcohol-disease relationships, undermine the quality and accuracy of public health policy and lead to the dissemination of misleading information.  This work is intended to advance the understanding of alcohol’s contribution to a range of chronic diseases and improve estimates of alcohol-attributable mortality and morbidity. It should clarify the evidence basis for advice from clinical practice and contribute understanding to national and international strategies to reduce the harm from alcoholic beverages.