The Use of Functional Data Analysis to Evaluate Activity in a Spontaneous Model of Degenerative Joint Disease Associated Pain in Cats


Accelerometry is used as an objective measure of physical activity in humans and veterinary species. In cats, one important use of accelerometry is in the study of therapeutics designed to treat degenerative joint disease (DJD) associated pain, where it serves as the most widely applied objective outcome measure. These analyses have commonly used summary measures, calculating the mean activity per-minute over days and comparing between treatment periods. While this technique has been effective, information about the pattern of activity in cats is lost. In this study, functional data analysis was applied to activity data from client-owned cats with (n = 83) and without (n = 15) DJD. Functional data analysis retains information about the pattern of activity over the 24-hour day, providing insight into activity over time.

PLOS ONE 12(1)