New approaches to disease causation research based on the sufficient-component cause model

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Up to date, the sufficient-component cause model seems to be a theoretical framework for disease causation in epidemiology, and its implications in epidemiological research methods is currently still limited. Recently, pitfalls in current epidemiological research methods were addressed based on the sufficient-component cause model; hence, new research approaches are needed as alternatives. Therefore, this paper aims to review and suggest new epidemiological methods used to assess disease causation. A new approach was discussed to identify potential mechanisms of disease occurrence which may be useful for risk prediction and disease prevention. In addition, a novel “exposed case-control” design was introduced to identify potential component causes. Furthermore, this paper suggested a new approach of conducting a systematic review/meta-analysis related to causation studies.

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