Segmentation and quantification of spinal cord gray matter–white matter structures in magnetic resonance images

Horváth, Antal. Segmentation and quantification of spinal cord gray matter–white matter structures in magnetic resonance images. 2019, Doctoral Thesis, University of Basel, Faculty of Medicine.


Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/diss/DissB_13492

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This thesis focuses on finding ways to differentiate the gray matter (GM) and white matter (WM) in magnetic resonance (MR) images of the human spinal cord (SC). The aim of this project is to quantify tissue loss in these compartments to study their implications on the progression of multiple sclerosis (MS). To this end, we propose segmentation algorithms that we evaluated on MR images of healthy volunteers.
Segmentation of GM and WM in MR images can be done manually by human experts, but manual segmentation is tedious and prone to intra- and inter-rater variability. Therefore, a deterministic automation of this task is necessary. On axial 2D images acquired with a recently proposed MR sequence, called AMIRA, we experiment with various automatic segmentation algorithms. We first use variational model-based segmentation approaches combined with appearance models and later directly apply supervised deep learning to train segmentation networks. Evaluation of the proposed methods shows accurate and precise results, which are on par with manual segmentations.
We test the developed deep learning approach on images of conventional MR sequences in the context of a GM segmentation challenge, resulting in superior performance compared to the other competing methods. To further assess the quality of the AMIRA sequence, we apply an already published GM segmentation algorithm to our data, yielding higher accuracy than the same algorithm achieves on images of conventional MR sequences.
On a different topic, but related to segmentation, we develop a high-order slice interpolation method to address the large slice distances of images acquired with the AMIRA protocol at different vertebral levels, enabling us to resample our data to intermediate slice positions.
From the methodical point of view, this work provides an introduction to computer vision, a mathematically focused perspective on variational segmentation approaches and supervised deep learning, as well as a brief overview of the underlying project's anatomical and medical background.
Advisors:Cattin, Philippe and Parmar, Katrin and Thiran, Jean-Philippe and Pezold, Simon
Faculties and Departments:03 Faculty of Medicine > Departement Biomedical Engineering > Imaging and Computational Modelling > Center for medical Image Analysis & Navigation (Cattin)
UniBasel Contributors:Horvath, Antal and Pezold, Simon
Item Type:Thesis
Thesis Subtype:Doctoral Thesis
Thesis no:13492
Thesis status:Complete
Number of Pages:1 Online-Ressource (xi, 177 Seiten)
Identification Number:
Last Modified:14 Feb 2020 05:30
Deposited On:13 Feb 2020 15:19

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