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ISRN Obstet Gynecol. 2011;2011:354861. doi: 10.5402/2011/354861. Epub 2011 Aug 25.

Whole slide quantification of stromal lymphatic vessel distribution and peritumoral lymphatic vessel density in early invasive cervical cancer: a method description.

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Laboratory of Tumor and Development Biology, Groupe Interdisciplinaire de Génoprotéomique Appliquée (GIGA-Cancer), University of Liège, Pathology Tower (B23), 4000 Liège, Belgium.


Peritumoral Lymphatic Vessel Density (LVD) is considered to be a predictive marker for the presence of lymph node metastases in cervical cancer. However, when LVD quantification relies on conventional optical microscopy and the hot spot technique, interobserver variability is significant and yields inconsistent conclusions. In this work, we describe an original method that applies computed image analysis to whole slide scanned tissue sections following immunohistochemical lymphatic vessel staining. This procedure allows to determine an objective LVD quantification as well as the lymphatic vessel distribution and its heterogeneity within the stroma surrounding the invasive tumor bundles. The proposed technique can be useful to better characterize lymphatic vessel interactions with tumor cells and could potentially impact on prognosis and therapeutic decisions.

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