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This article is part of the supplement: New trends in digital pathology: Proceedings of the 9th European Congress on Telepathology and 3rd International Congress on Virtual Microscopy

Open Access Proceedings

Object orientated automated image analysis: quantitative and qualitative estimation of inflammation in mouse lung

Coralie Apfeldorfer*, Kristina Ulrich, Gareth Jones, David Goodwin, Susie Collins, Emanuel Schenck and Virgile Richard

Diagnostic Pathology 2008, 3(Suppl 1):S16  doi:10.1186/1746-1596-3-S1-S16

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On number of sections and statistical power

Vincenzo Della Mea   (2009-02-10 09:18)  University of Udine, Italy

After having attended the Authors' congress presentation, I read the paper with much interest, because it depicts very well a protocol for obtaining reliable results from image analysis on histological sections.

However I would like to point out that the section entitled "Number of sections has little influence on statistical power of the study" reports a result well known since many years: statistical accuracy of a study depends more on the number of subjects enrolled than on the number of samples within the same subject, according to the Gundersen expression “Do more less well” (1). When dealing with rare condition, taking more samples from few subjects seems a shortcut for obtaining statistically significant results, but is not always the case.

(1) Gundersen HJG, Osterby R. Optimizing sampling efficiency of stereological studies in biology: or “do more less well!”. J Microsc 1981; 121-65.

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