[R-meta] metafor: non-normal meta-regression and random effects within meta-regression?

Roy Averill-Murray roy@ver|||murr@y @end|ng |rom gm@||@com
Wed Jan 16 20:22:21 CET 2019

I've been reading about meta-analysis and the metafor package and have two
quick questions for which I have not yet found answers:

Is it possible for the predictor model in a meta-regression to be based on
non-Gaussian distributions? For example, I am analyzing animal home ranges,
which are distributed within (0, inf), so (before looking into
meta-regression) I have been estimating GLMs on the home range point
estimates with a gamma distribution. I have not yet applied metafor to my
analysis with a Gaussian regression, but when I ignore v_i in the
individual home ranges, gamma models fit better than Gaussian.

Separately, I am conducting a similar analysis in which the response
variable is again home range size, but repeated for individuals in multiple
years. To date, I have been using GLMM with a gamma distribution and animal
ID as a random effect (plus other fixed effects). Can I include individual
as a random effect in a meta-regression, do I simply include "year" as a
fixed effect (with the within- and between-individual variation combined in
tau^2?), or something else?

I'm surprised that I have not been able to find anyone else addressing
these questions (beginning with meta-regression of home range sizes in the
first place) in the ecological literature. Thanks for any input,

Roy Averill-Murray

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