Quantitative neuropathology: data collection and statistical analysis

Richard A. Armstrong*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Published conference outputChapter (peer-reviewed)


The use of quantitative methods has become increasingly important in the study of neuropathology and especially in neurodegenerative disease. Disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD) and the frontotemporal dementias (FTD) are characterized by the formation of discrete, microscopic, pathological lesions which play an important role in pathological diagnosis. This chapter reviews the advantages and limitations of the different methods of quantifying pathological lesions in histological sections including estimates of density, frequency, coverage, and the use of semi-quantitative scores. The sampling strategies by which these quantitative measures can be obtained from histological sections, including plot or quadrat sampling, transect sampling, and point-quarter sampling, are described. In addition, data analysis methods commonly used to analysis quantitative data in neuropathology, including analysis of variance (ANOVA), polynomial curve fitting, multiple regression, classification trees, and principal components analysis (PCA), are discussed. These methods are illustrated with reference to quantitative studies of a variety of neurodegenerative disorders.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNeuropathology
Subtitle of host publicationnew research
EditorsEstevo Almeirao, Thiago Nonrado
PublisherNova science
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-62257-584-8
ISBN (Print)978-1-62257-583-1, 1-62257-583-0
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2012

Publication series

NameNeuroscience Research Progress; Neurology - Laboratory and Clinical Research Developments
PublisherNova Science Publishers


  • abundance
  • Alzheimer's disease (AD)
  • frontotemporal dementia (FTD)
  • neurodegenerative disorders
  • quantitative measurements
  • sampling methods


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