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
J0-03
Québec, Québec
Canada G1S 4L8
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Talbot D, Mésidor M, Chiu Y, Simard M, Sirois C

An Alternative Perspective on the Robust Poisson Method for Estimating Risk or Prevalence Ratios

Journal Article

Epidemiology, 2022.

Abstract | Links:

Carazo S, Skowronski DM, Brisson M, Barkati S, Sauvageau C, Brousseau N, Gilca R, Fafard J, Talbot D, Ouakki M, Gilca V, Carignan A, Deceuninck G, De Wals P, De Serres G

Protection against omicron (B.1.1.529) BA.2 reinfection conferred by primary omicron BA.1 or pre-omicron SARS-CoV-2 infection among health-care workers with and without mRNA vaccination: a test-negative case-control study

Journal Article

Lancet Infect Dis, 2022, ISSN: 1473-3099.

Abstract | Links:

Carazo S, Villeneuve J, Laliberté D, Longtin Y, Talbot D, Martin R, Denis G, Ducharme F, Paquet-Bolduc B, Anctil G, Hegg-Deloye S, De Serres G

Risk and protective factors for SARS-CoV-2 infection among healthcare workers: a test-negative case-control study in Quebec, Canada

Journal Article

Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol, 2022.

Abstract | Links:

Carazo S, Skowronski DM, Laforce R, Talbot D, Falcone EL, Laliberté D, Denis G, Deshaies P, Hegg-Deloye S, De Serres G

Physical, Psychological, and Cognitive Profile of Post-COVID Conditions in Healthcare Workers, Quebec, Canada

Journal Article

Open Forum Infect Dis, 9 (8), 2022.

Abstract | Links:

Diop SA, Duchesne T, G Cumming S, Diop A, Talbot D

Confounding adjustment methods for multi-level treatment comparisons under lack of positivity and unknown model specification

Journal Article

J Appl Stat, 49 (10), 2022.

Abstract | Links:

Fortin É, De Wals P, Talbot D, Ouakki M, Deceuninck G, Sauvageau C, Gilca R, Kiely M, De Serres G

Impact of the first vaccine dose on COVID-19 and its complications in long-term care facilities and private residences for seniors in Québec, Canada

Journal Article

Can Commun Dis Rep, 48 (4), 2022.

Abstract | Links:

Skowronski DM, Febriani Y, Ouakki M, Setayeshgar S, El Adam S, Zou M, Talbot D, Prystajecky N, Tyson JR, Gilca R, Brousseau N, Deceuninck G, Galanis E, Fjell CD, Sbihi H, Fortin E, Barkati S, Sauvageau C, Naus M, Patrick DM, Henry B, Hoang LMN, De Wals P, Garenc C, Carignan A, Drolet M, Jassem AN, Sadarangani M, Brisson M, Krajden M, De Serres G

Two-dose SARS-CoV-2 vaccine effectiveness with mixed schedules and extended dosing intervals: test-negative design studies from British Columbia and Quebec, Canada

Journal Article

Clin Infect Dis, 2022.

Abstract | Links:

Carazo S, Pelletier M, Talbot D, Jauvin N, De Serres G, Vézina M

Psychological Distress of Healthcare Workers in Québec (Canada) During the Second and the Third Pandemic Waves

Journal Article

J Occup Environ Med, 64 (6), 2022.

Abstract | Links:

Benasseur I, Talbot D, Durand M, Holbrook A, Matteau A, Potter BJ, Renoux C, Schnitzer ME, Tarride JÉ, Guertin JR

A comparison of confounder selection and adjustment methods for estimating causal effects using large healthcare databases

Journal Article

Pharmacoepidemiol Drug Saf, 31 (4), 2022.

Abstract | Links:

Trudel X, Tiwa Diffo E, Gilbert-Ouimet M, Mésidor M, Talbot D, Milot A, Brisson C

Low Social Support at Work and Ambulatory Blood Pressure in a Repeated Cross-sectional Study of White-Collar Workers

Journal Article

Ann Work Expo Health, 66 (3), 2022.

Abstract | Links:

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Active projects

  • Centre de recherches mathématiques (CRM), from 2022-04-01 to 2028-03-31
  • Déterminer la qualité de la polypharmacie chez les aînés : une approche basée sur l’intelligence artificielle, from 2020-04-01 to 2023-03-31
  • Funding to support this manuscript development was provided by the International Society for Pharmacoepidemiology (ISPE)., from 2021-12-01 to 2022-12-31
  • Méthodes d'inférence causale pour l'analyse de données médico-administratives et pour la médecine personnalisée, from 2022-07-01 to 2026-06-30
  • Model and variable selection for causal inference., from 2016-04-01 to 2023-03-31
  • Real-World Evaluation of the Efficacy, Safety and Cost-Effectiveness of Statins for Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease Among the Elderly – A Causal Perspective to Treatment Trajectory Analysis, from 2019-10-01 to 2023-03-31
  • The right care, for the right patient, at the right time, by the right provider: A value-based comparison of the management of ambulatory respiratory diseases in walk-in clinics, primary care physician practices and emergency departments, from 2020-04-01 to 2024-03-31
  • The right care, for the right patient, at the right time, by the right provider: A value-based comparison of the management of ambulatory respiratory diseases in walk-in clinics, primary care physician practices and emergency departments, from 2021-10-01 to 2025-03-31

Recently finished projects

  • Adoption de comportements préventifs chez les ainés vulnérables en situation d'épidémie /pandémie : vers une participation sociale sécuritaire (sans sortir de la maison) et une réduction des risques accrues , from 2020-04-01 to 2021-03-31
  • Centre de recherches mathématiques (CRM), from 2015-04-01 to 2022-03-31
  • DecreAsing sedentary behaviour and inCreasing physical acTIvity fOr healthy ageing (ACTION) study, from 2017-04-01 to 2021-08-31
  • Méthodes d'inférence causale et la prise de décision dans un cadre bayésien, from 2018-04-01 to 2022-03-31
  • Programme de soutien aux nouveaux chercheurs, from 2019-07-01 to 2021-06-30
  • Real-World Cost-Effectiveness of Direct Oral Anticoagulants in Atrial Fibrillation: A Canadian Health Technology Reassessment Study, from 2018-04-01 to 2020-09-30
  • Sélection de modèles statistiques pour effectuer de l'inférence causale à l'aide de données épidémiologiques, from 2018-07-01 to 2022-06-30
  • Subvention d'établissement de jeune chercheur, from 2018-07-01 to 2022-06-30
  • The right care, for the right patient, at the right time, by the right provider: A value-based comparison of the management of ambulatory respiratory diseases in walk-in clinics, primary care physician practices and emergency departments, from 2021-03-01 to 2022-02-28
Data provided by the Université Laval research projects registery