POINTS OF SIGNIFICANCE

The standardization fallacy

“We demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty!” —D. Adams

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Fig. 1: A confounding factor can be ignored, standardized or heterogenized.
Fig. 2: Standardization increases power but leads to higher variation between labs if an interaction between treatment and confounder is present.
Fig. 3: Confounder interaction can increase power to detect a treatment effect but reduce reproducibility.

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Correspondence to Martin Krzywinski.

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Voelkl, B., Würbel, H., Krzywinski, M. et al. The standardization fallacy. Nat Methods 18, 5–7 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41592-020-01036-9

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