Publications

2021
Fichtinger G, Mousavi P, Ungi T, Fenster A, Abolmaesumi P, Kronreif G, Ruiz-Alzola J, Ndoye A, Diao B, Kikinis R. Design of an Ultrasound-Navigated Prostate Cancer Biopsy System for Nationwide Implementation in Senegal. J Imaging. 2021;7 (8).Abstract
This paper presents the design of NaviPBx, an ultrasound-navigated prostate cancer biopsy system. NaviPBx is designed to support an affordable and sustainable national healthcare program in Senegal. It uses spatiotemporal navigation and multiparametric transrectal ultrasound to guide biopsies. NaviPBx integrates concepts and methods that have been independently validated previously in clinical feasibility studies and deploys them together in a practical prostate cancer biopsy system. NaviPBx is based entirely on free open-source software and will be shared as a free open-source program with no restriction on its use. NaviPBx is set to be deployed and sustained nationwide through the Senegalese Military Health Service. This paper reports on the results of the design process of NaviPBx. Our approach concentrates on "frugal technology", intended to be affordable for low-middle income (LMIC) countries. Our project promises the wide-scale application of prostate biopsy and will foster time-efficient development and programmatic implementation of ultrasound-guided diagnostic and therapeutic interventions in Senegal and beyond.
Sprugnoli G, Rossi S, Rotenberg A, Pascual-Leone A, El-Fakhri G, Golby AJ, Santarnecchi E. Personalised, Image-Guided, Noninvasive Brain Stimulation in Gliomas: Rationale, Challenges and Opportunities. EBioMedicine. 2021;70 :103514.Abstract
Malignant brain tumours are among the most aggressive human cancers, and despite intensive efforts made over the last decades, patients' survival has scarcely improved. Recently, high-grade gliomas (HGG) have been found to be electrically integrated with healthy brain tissue, a communication that facilitates tumour mitosis and invasion. This link to neuronal activity has provided new insights into HGG pathophysiology and opened prospects for therapeutic interventions based on electrical modulation of neural and synaptic activity in the proximity of tumour cells, which could potentially slow tumour growth. Noninvasive brain stimulation (NiBS), a group of techniques used in research and clinical settings to safely modulate brain activity and plasticity via electromagnetic or electrical stimulation, represents an appealing class of interventions to characterise and target the electrical properties of tumour-neuron interactions. Beyond neuronal activity, NiBS may also modulate function of a range of substrates and dynamics that locally interacts with HGG (e.g., vascular architecture, perfusion and blood-brain barrier permeability). Here we discuss emerging applications of NiBS in patients with brain tumours, covering potential mechanisms of action at both cellular, regional, network and whole-brain levels, also offering a conceptual roadmap for future research to prolong survival or promote wellbeing via personalised NiBS interventions.
Fedorov A, Longabaugh WJR, Pot D, Clunie DA, Pieper S, Aerts HJWL, Homeyer A, Lewis R, Akbarzadeh A, Bontempi D, et al. NCI Imaging Data Commons. Cancer Res. 2021;81 (16) :4188-93.Abstract
The National Cancer Institute (NCI) Cancer Research Data Commons (CRDC) aims to establish a national cloud-based data science infrastructure. Imaging Data Commons (IDC) is a new component of CRDC supported by the Cancer Moonshot{trade mark, serif}. The goal of IDC is to enable a broad spectrum of cancer researchers, with and without imaging expertise, to easily access and explore the value of de-identified imaging data and to support integrated analyses with non-imaging data. We achieve this goal by co-locating versatile imaging collections with cloud-based computing resources and data exploration, visualization, and analysis tools. The IDC pilot was released in October 2020 and is being continuously populated with radiology and histopathology collections. IDC provides access to curated imaging collections, accompanied by documentation, a user forum, and a growing number of analysis use cases that aim to demonstrate the value of a data commons framework applied to cancer imaging research.
Basu SS, Agar NYR. Bringing Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Mass Spectrometry Imaging to the Clinics. Clin Lab Med. 2021;41 (2) :309-324.Abstract
Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) mass spectrometry imaging (MSI) is an emerging analytical technique that promises to change tissue-based diagnostics. This article provides a brief introduction to MALDI MSI as well as clinical diagnostic workflows and opportunities to apply this powerful approach. It describes various MALDI MSI applications, from more clinically mature applications such as cancer to emerging applications such as infectious diseases and drug distribution. In addition, it discusses the analytical considerations that need to be considered when bringing these approaches to different diagnostic problems and settings.
Banach A, King F, Masaki F, Tsukada H, Hata N. Visually Navigated Bronchoscopy Using Three Cycle-Consistent Generative Adversarial Network for Depth Estimation. Med Image Anal. 2021;73 :102164.Abstract
[Background] Electromagnetically Navigated Bronchoscopy (ENB) is currently the state-of-the art diagnostic and interventional bronchoscopy. CT-to-body divergence is a critical hurdle in ENB, causing navigation error and ultimately limiting the clinical efficacy of diagnosis and treatment. In this study, Visually Navigated Bronchoscopy (VNB) is proposed to address the aforementioned issue of CT-to-body divergence. [Materials and Methods] We extended and validated an unsupervised learning method to generate a depth map directly from bronchoscopic images using a Three Cycle-Consistent Generative Adversarial Network (3cGAN) and registering the depth map to preprocedural CTs. We tested the working hypothesis that the proposed VNB can be integrated to the navigated bronchoscopic system based on 3D Slicer, and accurately register bronchoscopic images to pre-procedural CTs to navigate transbronchial biopsies. The quantitative metrics to asses the hypothesis we set was Absolute Tracking Error (ATE) of the tracking and the Target Registration Error (TRE) of the total navigation system. We validated our method on phantoms produced from the pre-procedural CTs of five patients who underwent ENB and on two ex-vivo pig lung specimens. [Results] The ATE using 3cGAN was 6.2 +/- 2.9 [mm]. The ATE of 3cGAN was statistically significantly lower than that of cGAN, particularly in the trachea and lobar bronchus (p < 0.001). The TRE of the proposed method had a range of 11.7 to 40.5 [mm]. The TRE computed by 3cGAN was statistically significantly smaller than those computed by cGAN in two of the five cases enrolled (p < 0.05). [Conclusion] VNB, using 3cGAN to generate the depth maps was technically and clinically feasible. While the accuracy of tracking by cGAN was acceptable, the TRE warrants further investigation and improvement.
Dominas C, Bhagavatula S, Stover EH, Deans K, Larocca C, Colson YL, Peruzzi PP, Kibel AS, Hata N, Tsai LL, et al. The Translational and Regulatory Development of an Implantable Microdevice for Multiple Drug Sensitivity Measurements in Cancer Patients. IEEE Trans Biomed Eng. 2021;PP.Abstract
OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this article is to report the translational process of an implantable microdevice platform with an emphasis on the technical and engineering adaptations for patient use, regulatory advances, and successful integration into clinical workflow. METHODS: We developed design adaptations for implantation and retrieval, established ongoing monitoring and testing, and facilitated regulatory advances that enabled the administration and examination of a large set of cancer therapies simultaneously in individual patients. RESULTS: Six applications for oncology studies have successfully proceeded to patient trials, with future applications in progress. CONCLUSION: First-in-human translation required engineering design changes to enable implantation and retrieval that fit with existing clinical workflows, a regulatory strategy that enabled both delivery and response measurement of up to 20 agents in a single patient, and establishment of novel testing and quality control processes for a drug/device combination product without clear precedents. SIGNIFICANCE: This manuscript provides a real-world account and roadmap on how to advance from animal proof-of-concept into the clinic, confronting the question of how to use research to benefit patients.
Yao S, Rigolo L, Yang F, Vangel MG, Wang H, Golby AJ, Liebenthal E, Tie Y. Movie-Watching fMRI for Presurgical Language Mapping in Patients With Brain Tumour. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2021.
Steinmann S, Lyall AE, Langhein M, Nägele FL, Rauh J, Cetin-Karayumak S, Zhang F, Mussmann M, Billah T, Makris N, et al. Sex-Related Differences in White Matter Asymmetry and Its Implications for Verbal Working Memory in Psychosis High-Risk State. Front Psychiatry. 2021;12 :686967.Abstract
Objective: Sexual dimorphism has been investigated in schizophrenia, although sex-specific differences among individuals who are at clinical high-risk (CHR) for developing psychosis have been inconclusive. This study aims to characterize sexual dimorphism of language areas in the brain by investigating the asymmetry of four white matter tracts relevant to verbal working memory in CHR patients compared to healthy controls (HC). HC typically show a leftward asymmetry of these tracts. Moreover, structural abnormalities in asymmetry and verbal working memory dysfunctions have been associated with neurodevelopmental abnormalities and are considered core features of schizophrenia. Methods: Twenty-nine subjects with CHR (17 female/12 male) for developing psychosis and twenty-one HC (11 female/10 male) matched for age, sex, and education were included in the study. Two-tensor unscented Kalman filter tractography, followed by an automated, atlas-guided fiber clustering approach, were used to identify four fiber tracts related to verbal working memory: the superior longitudinal fasciculi (SLF) I, II and III, and the superior occipitofrontal fasciculus (SOFF). Using fractional anisotropy (FA) of tissue as the primary measure, we calculated the laterality index for each tract. Results: There was a significantly greater right>left asymmetry of the SLF-III in CHR females compared to HC females, but no hemispheric difference between CHR vs. HC males. Moreover, the laterality index of SLF-III for CHR females correlated negatively with Backward Digit Span performance, suggesting a greater rightward asymmetry was associated with poorer working memory functioning. Conclusion: This study suggests increased rightward asymmetry of the SLF-III in CHR females. This finding of sexual dimorphism in white matter asymmetry in a language-related area of the brain in CHR highlights the need for a deeper understanding of the role of sex in the high-risk state. Future work investigating early sex-specific pathophysiological mechanisms, may lead to the development of novel personalized treatment strategies aimed at preventing transition to a more chronic and difficult-to-treat disorder.
Langbein BJ, Szczepankiewicz F, Westin C-F, Bay C, Maier SE, Kibel AS, Tempany CM, Fennessy FM. A Pilot Study of Multidimensional Diffusion MRI for Assessment of Tissue Heterogeneity in Prostate Cancer. Invest Radiol. 2021.Abstract
OBJECTIVES: The objectives of this exploratory study were to investigate the feasibility of multidimensional diffusion magnetic resonance imaging (MddMRI) in assessing diffusion heterogeneity at both a macroscopic and microscopic level in prostate cancer (PCa). MATERIALS AND METHODS: Informed consent was obtained from 46 subjects who underwent 3.0-T prostate multiparametric MRI, complemented with a prototype spin echo-based MddMRI sequence in this institutional review board-approved study. Prostate cancer tumors and comparative normal tissue from each patient were contoured on both apparent diffusion coefficient and MddMRI-derived mean diffusivity (MD) maps (from which microscopic diffusion heterogeneity [MKi] and microscopic diffusion anisotropy were derived) using 3D Slicer. The discriminative ability of MddMRI-derived parameters to differentiate PCa from normal tissue was determined using the Friedman test. To determine if tumor diffusion heterogeneity is similar on macroscopic and microscopic scales, the linear association between SD of MD and mean MKi was estimated using robust regression (bisquare weighting). Hypothesis testing was 2 tailed; P values less than 0.05 were considered statistically significant. RESULTS: All MddMRI-derived parameters could distinguish tumor from normal tissue in the fixed-effects analysis (P < 0.0001). Tumor MKi was higher (P < 0.05) compared with normal tissue (median, 0.40; interquartile range, 0.29-0.52 vs 0.20-0.18; 0.25), as was tumor microscopic diffusion anisotropy (0.55; 0.36-0.81 vs 0.20-0.15; 0.28). The MKi could not be predicted (no significant association) by SD of MD. There was a significant correlation between tumor volume and SD of MD (R2 = 0.50, slope = 0.008 μm2/ms per millimeter, P < 0.001) but not between tumor volume and MKi. CONCLUSIONS: This explorative study demonstrates that MddMRI provides novel information on MKi and microscopic anisotropy, which differ from measures at the macroscopic level. MddMRI has the potential to characterize tumor tissue heterogeneity at different spatial scales.
Bastos DCDA, Juvekar P, Tie Y, Jowkar N, Pieper S, Wells WM, Bi WL, Golby A, Frisken S, Kapur T. Challenges and Opportunities of Intraoperative 3D Ultrasound With Neuronavigation in Relation to Intraoperative MRI. Front Oncol. 2021;11 :656519.Abstract
Introduction: Neuronavigation greatly improves the surgeons ability to approach, assess and operate on brain tumors, but tends to lose its accuracy as the surgery progresses and substantial brain shift and deformation occurs. Intraoperative MRI (iMRI) can partially address this problem but is resource intensive and workflow disruptive. Intraoperative ultrasound (iUS) provides real-time information that can be used to update neuronavigation and provide real-time information regarding the resection progress. We describe the intraoperative use of 3D iUS in relation to iMRI, and discuss the challenges and opportunities in its use in neurosurgical practice. Methods: We performed a retrospective evaluation of patients who underwent image-guided brain tumor resection in which both 3D iUS and iMRI were used. The study was conducted between June 2020 and December 2020 when an extension of a commercially available navigation software was introduced in our practice enabling 3D iUS volumes to be reconstructed from tracked 2D iUS images. For each patient, three or more 3D iUS images were acquired during the procedure, and one iMRI was acquired towards the end. The iUS images included an extradural ultrasound sweep acquired before dural incision (iUS-1), a post-dural opening iUS (iUS-2), and a third iUS acquired immediately before the iMRI acquisition (iUS-3). iUS-1 and preoperative MRI were compared to evaluate the ability of iUS to visualize tumor boundaries and critical anatomic landmarks; iUS-3 and iMRI were compared to evaluate the ability of iUS for predicting residual tumor. Results: Twenty-three patients were included in this study. Fifteen patients had tumors located in eloquent or near eloquent brain regions, the majority of patients had low grade gliomas (11), gross total resection was achieved in 12 patients, postoperative temporary deficits were observed in five patients. In twenty-two iUS was able to define tumor location, tumor margins, and was able to indicate relevant landmarks for orientation and guidance. In sixteen cases, white matter fiber tracts computed from preoperative dMRI were overlaid on the iUS images. In nineteen patients, the EOR (GTR or STR) was predicted by iUS and confirmed by iMRI. The remaining four patients where iUS was not able to evaluate the presence or absence of residual tumor were recurrent cases with a previous surgical cavity that hindered good contact between the US probe and the brainsurface. Conclusion: This recent experience at our institution illustrates the practical benefits, challenges, and opportunities of 3D iUS in relation to iMRI.
Meyer A, Mehrtash A, Rak M, Bashkanov O, Langbein B, Ziaei A, Kibel AS, Tempany CM, Hansen C, Tokuda J. Domain Adaptation for Segmentation of Critical Structures for Prostate Cancer Therapy. Sci Rep. 2021;11 (1) :11480.Abstract
Preoperative assessment of the proximity of critical structures to the tumors is crucial in avoiding unnecessary damage during prostate cancer treatment. A patient-specific 3D anatomical model of those structures, namely the neurovascular bundles (NVB) and the external urethral sphincters (EUS), can enable physicians to perform such assessments intuitively. As a crucial step to generate a patient-specific anatomical model from preoperative MRI in a clinical routine, we propose a multi-class automatic segmentation based on an anisotropic convolutional network. Our specific challenge is to train the network model on a unique source dataset only available at a single clinical site and deploy it to another target site without sharing the original images or labels. As network models trained on data from a single source suffer from quality loss due to the domain shift, we propose a semi-supervised domain adaptation (DA) method to refine the model's performance in the target domain. Our DA method combines transfer learning and uncertainty guided self-learning based on deep ensembles. Experiments on the segmentation of the prostate, NVB, and EUS, show significant performance gain with the combination of those techniques compared to pure TL and the combination of TL with simple self-learning ([Formula: see text] for all structures using a Wilcoxon's signed-rank test). Results on a different task and data (Pancreas CT segmentation) demonstrate our method's generic application capabilities. Our method has the advantage that it does not require any further data from the source domain, unlike the majority of recent domain adaptation strategies. This makes our method suitable for clinical applications, where the sharing of patient data is restricted.
Zhou H, Jayender J. Real-Time Nonrigid Mosaicking of Laparoscopy Images. IEEE Trans Med Imaging. 2021;40 (6) :1726-36.Abstract
The ability to extend the field of view of laparoscopy images can help the surgeons to obtain a better understanding of the anatomical context. However, due to tissue deformation, complex camera motion and significant three-dimensional (3D) anatomical surface, image pixels may have non-rigid deformation and traditional mosaicking methods cannot work robustly for laparoscopy images in real-time. To solve this problem, a novel two-dimensional (2D) non-rigid simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) system is proposed in this paper, which is able to compensate for the deformation of pixels and perform image mosaicking in real-time. The key algorithm of this 2D non-rigid SLAM system is the expectation maximization and dual quaternion (EMDQ) algorithm, which can generate smooth and dense deformation field from sparse and noisy image feature matches in real-time. An uncertainty-based loop closing method has been proposed to reduce the accumulative errors. To achieve real-time performance, both CPU and GPU parallel computation technologies are used for dense mosaicking of all pixels. Experimental results on in vivo and synthetic data demonstrate the feasibility and accuracy of our non-rigid mosaicking method.
Madore B, Preiswerk F, Bredfeldt JS, Zong S, Cheng C-C. Ultrasound-based Sensors to Monitor Physiological Motion. Med Phys. 2021;48 (7) :3614-22.Abstract
PURPOSE: Medical procedures can be difficult to perform on anatomy that is constantly moving. Respiration displaces internal organs by up to several centimeters with respect to the surface of the body, and patients often have limited ability to hold their breath. Strategies to compensate for motion during diagnostic and therapeutic procedures require reliable information to be available. However, current devices often monitor respiration indirectly, through changes on the outline of the body, and they may be fixed to floors or ceilings, and thus unable to follow a given patient through different locations. Here we show that small ultrasound-based sensors referred to as "organ configuration motion" (OCM) sensors can be fixed to the abdomen and/or chest and provide information-rich, breathing-related signals. METHODS: By design, the proposed sensors are relatively inexpensive. Breathing waveforms were obtained from tissues at varying depths and/or using different sensor placements. Validation was performed against breathing waveforms derived from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and optical tracking signals in five and eight volunteers, respectively. RESULTS: Breathing waveforms from different modalities were scaled so they could be directly compared. Differences between waveforms were expressed in the form of a percentage, as compared to the amplitude of a typical breath. Expressed in this manner, for shallow tissues, OCM-derived waveforms on average differed from MRI and optical tracking results by 13.1% and 15.5%, respectively. CONCLUSION: The present results suggest that the proposed sensors provide measurements that properly characterize breathing states. While OCM-based waveforms from shallow tissues proved similar in terms of information content to those derived from MRI or optical tracking, OCM further captured depth-dependent and position-dependent (i.e., chest and abdomen) information. In time, the richer information content of OCM-based waveforms may enable better respiratory gating to be performed, to allow diagnostic and therapeutic equipment to perform at their best.
Chaudhuri S, Fowler MJ, Baker C, Stopka SA, Regan MS, Sablatura L, Broughton CW, Knight BE, Stabenfeldt SE, Agar NYR, et al. β-Cyclodextrin-poly (β-Amino Ester) Nanoparticles Are a Generalizable Strategy for High Loading and Sustained Release of HDAC Inhibitors. ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2021;13 (18) :20960-73.Abstract
Therapeutic development of histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACi) has been hampered by a number of barriers to drug delivery, including poor solubility and inadequate tissue penetration. Nanoparticle encapsulation could be one approach to improve the delivery of HDACi to target tissues; however, effective and generalizable loading of HDACi within nanoparticle systems remains a long-term challenge. We hypothesized that the common terminally ionizable moiety on many HDACi molecules could be capitalized upon for loading in polymeric nanoparticles. Here, we describe the simple, efficient formulation of a novel library of β-cyclodextrin-poly (β-amino ester) networks (CDN) to achieve this goal. We observed that network architecture was a critical determinant of CDN encapsulation of candidate molecules, with a more hydrophobic core enabling effective self-assembly and a PEGylated surface enabling high loading (up to ∼30% w/w), effective self-assembly of the nanoparticle, and slow release of drug into aqueous media (up to 24 days) for the model HDACi panobinostat. We next constructed a library of CDNs to encapsulate various small, hydrophobic, terminally ionizable molecules (panobinostat, quisinostat, dacinostat, givinostat, bortezomib, camptothecin, nile red, and cytarabine), which yielded important insights into the structural requirements for effective drug loading and CDN self-assembly. Optimized CDN nanoparticles were taken up by GL261 cells in culture and a released panobinostat was confirmed to be bioactive. Panobinostat-loaded CDNs were next administered by convection-enhanced delivery (CED) to mice bearing intracranial GL261 tumors. These studies confirm that CDN encapsulation enables a higher deliverable dose of drug to effectively slow tumor growth. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) analysis on tissue sections confirms higher exposure of tumor to drug, which likely accounts for the therapeutic effects. Taken in sum, these studies present a novel nanocarrier platform for encapsulation of HDACi via both ionic and hydrophobic interactions, which is an important step toward better treatment of disease via HDACi therapy.
Wang D, Zhang T, Li M, Bueno R, Jayender J. 3D Deep Learning Based Classification of Pulmonary Ground Glass Opacity Nodules With Automatic Segmentation. Comput Med Imaging Graph. 2021;88 :101814.Abstract
Classifying ground-glass lung nodules (GGNs) into atypical adenomatous hyperplasia (AAH), adenocarcinoma in situ (AIS), minimally invasive adenocarcinoma (MIA), and invasive adenocarcinoma (IAC) on diagnostic CT images is important to evaluate the therapy options for lung cancer patients. In this paper, we propose a joint deep learning model where the segmentation can better facilitate the classification of pulmonary GGNs. Based on our observation that masking the nodule to train the model results in better lesion classification, we propose to build a cascade architecture with both segmentation and classification networks. The segmentation model works as a trainable preprocessing module to provide the classification-guided 'attention' weight map to the raw CT data to achieve better diagnosis performance. We evaluate our proposed model and compare with other baseline models for 4 clinically significant nodule classification tasks, defined by a combination of pathology types, using 4 classification metrics: Accuracy, Average F1 Score, Matthews Correlation Coefficient (MCC), and Area Under the Receiver Operating Characteristic Curve (AUC). Experimental results show that the proposed method outperforms other baseline models on all the diagnostic classification tasks.
Wang D, Li M, Ben-Shlomo N, Corrales EC, Cheng Y, Zhang T, Jayender J. A Novel Dual-Network Architecture for Mixed-Supervised Medical Image Segmentation. Comput Med Imaging Graph. 2021;89 :101841.Abstract
In medical image segmentation tasks, deep learning-based models usually require densely and precisely annotated datasets to train, which are time-consuming and expensive to prepare. One possible solution is to train with the mixed-supervised dataset, where only a part of data is densely annotated with segmentation map and the rest is annotated with some weak form, such as bounding box. In this paper, we propose a novel network architecture called Mixed-Supervised Dual-Network (MSDN), which consists of two separate networks for the segmentation and detection tasks respectively, and a series of connection modules between the layers of the two networks. These connection modules are used to extract and transfer useful information from the detection task to help the segmentation task. We exploit a variant of a recently designed technique called 'Squeeze and Excitation' in the connection module to boost the information transfer between the two tasks. Compared with existing model with shared backbone and multiple branches, our model has flexible and trainable feature sharing fashion and thus is more effective and stable. We conduct experiments on 4 medical image segmentation datasets, and experiment results show that the proposed MSDN model outperforms multiple baselines.
He J, Zhang F, Xie G, Yao S, Feng Y, Bastos DCA, Rathi Y, Makris N, Kikinis R, Golby AJ, et al. Comparison of Multiple Tractography Methods for Reconstruction of the Retinogeniculate Visual Pathway Using Diffusion MRI. Hum Brain Mapp. 2021;42 (12) :3887-904.Abstract
The retinogeniculate visual pathway (RGVP) conveys visual information from the retina to the lateral geniculate nucleus. The RGVP has four subdivisions, including two decussating and two nondecussating pathways that cannot be identified on conventional structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Diffusion MRI tractography has the potential to trace these subdivisions and is increasingly used to study the RGVP. However, it is not yet known which fiber tracking strategy is most suitable for RGVP reconstruction. In this study, four tractography methods are compared, including constrained spherical deconvolution (CSD) based probabilistic (iFOD1) and deterministic (SD-Stream) methods, and multi-fiber (UKF-2T) and single-fiber (UKF-1T) unscented Kalman filter (UKF) methods. Experiments use diffusion MRI data from 57 subjects in the Human Connectome Project. The RGVP is identified using regions of interest created by two clinical experts. Quantitative anatomical measurements and expert anatomical judgment are used to assess the advantages and limitations of the four tractography methods. Overall, we conclude that UKF-2T and iFOD1 produce the best RGVP reconstruction results. The iFOD1 method can better quantitatively estimate the percentage of decussating fibers, while the UKF-2T method produces reconstructed RGVPs that are judged to better correspond to the known anatomy and have the highest spatial overlap across subjects. Overall, we find that it is challenging for current tractography methods to both accurately track RGVP fibers that correspond to known anatomy and produce an approximately correct percentage of decussating fibers. We suggest that future algorithm development for RGVP tractography should take consideration of both of these two points.
Zhang F, Breger A, Cho KIK, Ning L, Westin C-F, O'Donnell LJ, Pasternak O. Deep Learning Based Segmentation of Brain Tissue from Diffusion MRI. Neuroimage. 2021;233 :117934.Abstract
Segmentation of brain tissue types from diffusion MRI (dMRI) is an important task, required for quantification of brain microstructure and for improving tractography. Current dMRI segmentation is mostly based on anatomical MRI (e.g., T1- and T2-weighted) segmentation that is registered to the dMRI space. However, such inter-modality registration is challenging due to more image distortions and lower image resolution in dMRI as compared with anatomical MRI. In this study, we present a deep learning method for diffusion MRI segmentation, which we refer to as DDSeg. Our proposed method learns tissue segmentation from high-quality imaging data from the Human Connectome Project (HCP), where registration of anatomical MRI to dMRI is more precise. The method is then able to predict a tissue segmentation directly from new dMRI data, including data collected with different acquisition protocols, without requiring anatomical data and inter-modality registration. We train a convolutional neural network (CNN) to learn a tissue segmentation model using a novel augmented target loss function designed to improve accuracy in regions of tissue boundary. To further improve accuracy, our method adds diffusion kurtosis imaging (DKI) parameters that characterize non-Gaussian water molecule diffusion to the conventional diffusion tensor imaging parameters. The DKI parameters are calculated from the recently proposed mean-kurtosis-curve method that corrects implausible DKI parameter values and provides additional features that discriminate between tissue types. We demonstrate high tissue segmentation accuracy on HCP data, and also when applying the HCP-trained model on dMRI data from other acquisitions with lower resolution and fewer gradient directions.
Xu Z, Luo J, Yan J, Li X, Jayender J. F3RNet: Full-resolution Residual Registration Network for Deformable Image Registration. Int J Comput Assist Radiol Surg. 2021;16 (6) :923-32.Abstract
PURPOSE: Deformable image registration (DIR) is essential for many image-guided therapies. Recently, deep learning approaches have gained substantial popularity and success in DIR. Most deep learning approaches use the so-called mono-stream high-to-low, low-to-high network structure and can achieve satisfactory overall registration results. However, accurate alignments for some severely deformed local regions, which are crucial for pinpointing surgical targets, are often overlooked. Consequently, these approaches are not sensitive to some hard-to-align regions, e.g., intra-patient registration of deformed liver lobes. METHODS: We propose a novel unsupervised registration network, namely full-resolution residual registration network (F3RNet), for deformable registration of severely deformed organs. The proposed method combines two parallel processing streams in a residual learning fashion. One stream takes advantage of the full-resolution information that facilitates accurate voxel-level registration. The other stream learns the deep multi-scale residual representations to obtain robust recognition. We also factorize the 3D convolution to reduce the training parameters and enhance network efficiency. RESULTS: We validate the proposed method on a clinically acquired intra-patient abdominal CT-MRI dataset and a public inspiratory and expiratory thorax CT dataset. Experiments on both multimodal and unimodal registration demonstrate promising results compared to state-of-the-art approaches. CONCLUSION: By combining the high-resolution information and multi-scale representations in a highly interactive residual learning fashion, the proposed F3RNet can achieve accurate overall and local registration. The run time for registering a pair of images is less than 3 s using a GPU. In future works, we will investigate how to cost-effectively process high-resolution information and fuse multi-scale representations.
Moreira P, Grimble J, Iftimia N, Bay CP, Tuncali K, Park J, Tokuda J. In Vivo Evaluation of Angulated Needle-Guide Template for MRI-Guided Transperineal Prostate Biopsy. Med Phys. 2021;48 (5) :2553-65.Abstract
PURPOSE: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-guided transperineal prostate biopsy has been practiced since the early 2000s. The technique often suffers from targeting error due to deviation of the needle as a result of physical interaction between the needle and inhomogeneous tissues. Existing needle guide devices, such as a grid template, do not allow choosing an alternative insertion path to mitigate the deviation because of their limited degree-of-freedom (DoF). This study evaluates how an angulated needle insertion path can reduce needle deviation and improve needle placement accuracy. METHODS: We extended a robotic needle-guidance device (Smart Template) for in-bore MRI-guided transperineal prostate biopsy. The new Smart Template has a 4-DoF needle-guiding mechanism allowing a translational range of motion of 65 and 58 mm along the vertical and horizontal axis, and a needle rotational motion around the vertical and horizontal axis and a vertical rotational range of , respectively. We defined a path planning strategy, which chooses between straight and angulated insertion paths depending on the anatomical structures on the potential insertion path. We performed (a) a set of experiments to evaluate the device positioning accuracy outside the MR-bore, and (b) an in vivo experiment to evaluate the improvement of targeting accuracy combining straight and angulated insertions in animal models (swine, ). RESULTS: We analyzed 46 in vivo insertions using either straight or angulated insertions paths. The experiment showed that the proposed strategy of selecting straight or angulated insertions based on the subject's anatomy outperformed the conventional approach of just straight insertions in terms of targeting accuracy (2.4 mm [1.3-3.7] vs 3.9 mm [2.4-5.0] {Median ); p = 0.041 after the bias correction). CONCLUSION: The in vivo experiment successfully demonstrated that an angulated needle insertion path could improve needle placement accuracy with a path planning strategy that takes account of the subject-specific anatomical structures.

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