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Markov Chain Monte Carlo Methods

  1. Claus Skaanning

Published Online: 15 JUL 2006

DOI: 10.1038/npg.els.0005437



How to Cite

Skaanning, C. 2006. Markov Chain Monte Carlo Methods. eLS. .

Author Information

  1. Dezide, Aalborg, Denmark

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 JUL 2006


Markov chain Monte Carlo methods are used to sample from complicated multivariate distributions that are not computable in practice and from which direct sampling (Monte Carlo) is not feasible. In the field of genetics, they are used in pedigree and linkage analysis to obtain the posterior probabilities of individuals possessing specific genes.


  • Gibbs sampler;
  • Metropolis–Hastings;
  • pedigree analysis;
  • linkage analysis;
  • ergodic;
  • blocking;
  • blocked