Dr. Denis Talbot, Ph.D., is a regular investigator at the CHU de Québec – Laval University Research Center and professor in biostatistics at the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine of Laval University’s School of Medicine. His research interests focus on the development of statistical methods to perform causal inference and the application of such methods in health research, particularly in cardiovascular health research. Causal inference seeks to predict the effect that a potential intervention would have, for instance the effect of a public health policy or a medical treatment.

Model selection for causal inference

When observational data are utilized to investigate the relationship between an exposure and a disease, there can be variables that are both associated with the exposure and the disease. Such variables, called confounders, may distort the observed relationship between the exposure and the disease, unless adequate control is performed. Unfortunately, identifying confounders solely based on substantive knowledge can be difficult. Moreover, once confounders are identified, an appropriate statistical modeling approach must be employed to eliminate the bias that confounders produce.

One strategy to circumvent these problems would be to use statistical methods to supplement scientific knowledge with the information available in the data. Such methods would facilitate the identification and the control for confounders, and thus facilitate the identification of the causal relationship between the exposure and the disease. An important part of Dr. Talbot’s research program, funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, targets the development of such statistical methods.

Other interests in causal inference

Dr. Talbot is also interested in many other aspects of causal inference, notably in causal mediation methods and treatment regime effects (for example, cumulative exposure, and marginal structural models). He is involved in various collaborative research projects, for instance on health at work, nutrition or physical activity.

Hôpital Saint-Sacrement
1050, chemin Sainte-Foy
Québec, Québec
Canada G1S 4L8

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Kiely M, Boulianne N, Talbot D, Ouakki M, Guay M, Landry M, Sauvageau C, De Serres G

Impact of vaccine delays at the 2, 4, 6 and 12 month visits on incomplete vaccination status by 24 months of age in Quebec, Canada.

Journal Article

BMC Public Health, 18 (1), pp. 1364, 2018.

Abstract | Links:

Ni J, Dasgupta K, Kahn SR, Talbot D, Lefebvre G, Lix LM, Berry G, Burman M, Dimentberg R, Laflamme Y, Cirkovic A, Rahme E

Comparing external and internal validation methods in correcting outcome misclassification bias in logistic regression: A simulation study and application to the case of postsurgical venous thromboembolism following total hip and knee arthroplasty.

Journal Article

Pharmacoepidemiol Drug Saf, 2018, ISSN: 1053-8569.

Abstract | Links:

Trudel X, Brisson C, Gilbert-Ouimet M, Duchaine CS, Dalens V, Talbot D, Milot A

Masked hypertension incidence and risk factors in a prospective cohort study.

Journal Article

Eur J Prev Cardiol, pp. 2047487318802692, 2018, ISSN: 2047-4873.

Abstract | Links:

Harrison S, Carbonneau E, Talbot D, Lemieux S, Lamarche B

Development and validation of a dietary screener for carbohydrate intake in endurance athletes.

Journal Article

J Int Soc Sports Nutr, 15 (1), pp. 44, 2018.

Abstract | Links:

Talbot D, Rossi AM, Bacon SL, Atherton J, Lefebvre G

A graphical perspective of marginal structural models: An application for the estimation of the effect of physical activity on blood pressure.

Journal Article

Stat Methods Med Res, 27 (8), pp. 2428-2436, 2018, ISSN: 0962-2802.

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Active projects

  • Centre hospitalier universitaire de Québec - CHU de Québec-Université Laval, Subvention, Centre hospitalier universitaire de Québec - Université Laval, Centres de recherche affiliés, from 2017-01-01 to 2099-12-31
  • DecreAsing sedentary behaviour and inCreasing physical acTIvity fOr healthy ageing (ACTION) study, Subvention, Instituts de recherche en santé du Canada, Subvention Projet, from 2017-04-01 to 2021-08-31
  • Inégalités sociales dans les trajectoires d'usage des traitements oraux pour le cancer du sein : Une comparaison France - Québec, Subvention, Instituts de recherche en santé du Canada, Subvention de fonctionnement, from 2017-04-01 to 2019-03-31
  • Model and variable selection for causal inference., Subvention, Conseil de recherches en sciences naturelles et génie Canada, Subventions à la découverte SD (individuelles et d'équipe), from 2016-04-01 to 2021-03-31
  • Observatoire québécois de l'adaptation aux changements climatiques, Subvention, Institut national de santé publique du Québec, from 2015-01-01 to 2019-03-31
  • Real-World Cost-Effectiveness of Direct Oral Anticoagulants in Atrial Fibrillation: A Canadian Health Technology Reassessment Study, Subvention, Instituts de recherche en santé du Canada, Subvention Projet, from 2018-04-01 to 2020-09-30

Recently finished projects

  • Sélection de modèles statistiques pour effectuer de l'inférence causale à l'aide de données épidémiologiques., Subvention, Fondation du CHU de Québec, from 2016-07-19 to 2017-03-31
Data provided by the Université Laval research projects registery