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International Journal of Biomedical Imaging aims to promote research and development of biomedical imaging by publishing high-quality research articles and reviews in this rapidly growing interdisciplinary field.
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Comparison of Diffusion Tensor Imaging Metrics in Normal-Appearing White Matter to Cerebrovascular Lesions and Correlation with Cerebrovascular Disease Risk Factors and Severity
Alterations in tissue microstructure in normal-appearing white matter (NAWM), specifically measured by diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) fractional anisotropy (FA), have been associated with cognitive outcomes following stroke. The purpose of this study was to comprehensively compare conventional DTI measures of tissue microstructure in NAWM to diverse vascular brain lesions in people with cerebrovascular disease (CVD) and to examine associations between FA in NAWM and cerebrovascular risk factors. DTI metrics including fractional anisotropy (FA), mean diffusivity (MD), axial diffusivity (AD), and radial diffusivity (RD) were measured in cerebral tissues and cerebrovascular anomalies from 152 people with CVD participating in the Ontario Neurodegenerative Disease Research Initiative (ONDRI). Ten cerebral tissue types were segmented including NAWM, and vascular lesions including stroke, periventricular and deep white matter hyperintensities, periventricular and deep lacunar infarcts, and perivascular spaces (PVS) using T1-weighted, proton density-weighted, T2-weighted, and fluid attenuated inversion recovery MRI scans. Mean DTI metrics were measured in each tissue region using a previously developed DTI processing pipeline and compared between tissues using multivariate analysis of covariance. Associations between FA in NAWM and several CVD risk factors were also examined. DTI metrics in vascular lesions differed significantly from healthy tissue. Specifically, all tissue types had significantly different MD values, while FA was also found to be different in most tissue types. FA in NAWM was inversely related to hypertension and modified Rankin scale (mRS). This study demonstrated the differences between conventional DTI metrics, FA, MD, AD, and RD, in cerebral vascular lesions and healthy tissue types. Therefore, incorporating DTI to characterize the integrity of the tissue microstructure could help to define the extent and severity of various brain vascular anomalies. The association between FA within NAWM and clinical evaluation of hypertension and disability provides further evidence that white matter microstructural integrity is impacted by cerebrovascular function.
Towards an Accurate MRI Acute Ischemic Stroke Lesion Segmentation Based on Bioheat Equation and U-Net Model
Acute ischemic stroke represents a cerebrovascular disease, for which it is practical, albeit challenging to segment and differentiate infarct core from salvageable penumbra brain tissue. Ischemic stroke causes the variation of cerebral blood flow and heat generation due to metabolism. Therefore, the temperature is modified in the ischemic stroke region. In this paper, we incorporate acute ischemic stroke temperature profile to reinforce segmentation accuracy in MRI. Pennes bioheat equation was used to generate brain thermal images that may provide rich information regarding the temperature change in acute ischemic stroke lesions. The thermal images were generated by calculating the temperature of the brain with acute ischemic stroke. Then, U-Net was used in this paper for the segmentation of acute ischemic stroke. A dataset of 3192 images was created to train U-Net using -fold crossvalidation. The training time was about 10 hours and 35 minutes in NVIDIA GPU. Next, the obtained trained model was compared with recent methods to analyze the effect of the ischemic stroke temperature profile in segmentation. The obtained results show that significant parts of acute ischemic stroke and background areas are segmented only in thermal images, which proves the importance of using thermal information to improve the segmentation outcomes in MRI diagnosis.
Left Ventricle Segmentation in Cardiac MR Images via an Improved ResUnet
Cardiovascular diseases are reported as the leading cause of death around the world. Automatic segmentation of the left ventricle (LV) from magnetic resonance (MR) images is essential for an early diagnosis. An enhanced ResUnet is proposed in this paper to improve the performance of extracting LV endocardium and epicardium from MR images, improving the accuracy of the model by introducing a medium skip connection for the contracting path and a short skip connection for the residual unit. Also, a depth-wise separable convolution replaces the typical convolution operation to improve training efficiency. In the MICCAI 2009 LV segmentation challenge test dataset, the percentages of “good” contours, dice metric, and average perpendicular distance of endocardium (epicardium) are , respectively. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed model obtains promising performance and outperforms state-of-the-art methods. By incorporating these various skip connections, the segmentation accuracy of the model is significantly improved, while the depth-wise separable convolution also improves the model efficiency.
Myocardium Assessment by Relaxation along Fictitious Field, Extracellular Volume, Feature Tracking, and Myocardial Strain in Hypertensive Patients with Left Ventricular Hypertrophy
Background. Previous research has shown impaired global longitudinal strain (GLS) and slightly elevated extracellular volume fraction (ECV) in hypertensive patients with left ventricular hypertrophy (HTN LVH). Up to now, only little attention has been paid to interactions between macromolecules and free water in hypertrophied myocardium. Purpose. To evaluate the feasibility of relaxation along a fictitious field with rank 2 (RAFF2) in HTN LVH patients. Study Type. Single institutional case control. Subjects. 9 HTN LVH (age, years) and 11 control subjects (age, years). Field Strength/Sequence. Relaxation time mapping (, , and with 11.8 μT maximum radio frequency field amplitude) was performed at 1.5 T using a Siemens Aera (Erlangen, Germany) scanner equipped with an 18-channel body array coil. Assessment. ECV was calculated using pre- and postcontrast , and global strains parameters were assessed by Segment CMR (Medviso AB Co, Sweden). The parametric maps of and were computed using a monoexponential model, while the Bloch-McConnell equations were solved numerically to model effect of the chemical exchange during radio frequency pulses. Statistical Tests. Parametric maps were averaged over myocardium for each subject to be used in statistical analysis. Kolmogorov-Smirnov was used as the normality test followed by Student’s t-test and Pearson’s correlation to determine the difference between the HTN LVH patients and controls along with Hedges’ effect size and the association between variables, respectively. Results. decreased statistically , and global longitudinal strain was impaired (GLS, ) in HTN LVH patients compared to the controls, respectively. Also, significant negative correlation was found between and GLS . Data Conclusion. Our results suggest that decrease in HTN LVH patients may be explained by gradual collagen accumulation which can be reflected in GLS changes. Most likely, it increases the water proton interactions and consequently decreases before myocardial scarring.
Relative Perfusion Differences between Parathyroid Adenomas and the Thyroid on Multiphase 4DCT
A multiphase 4DCT technique can be useful for the detection of parathyroid adenomas. Up to 16 different phases can be obtained without significant increase of exposure dose using wide beam axial scanning. This technique also allows for the calculation of perfusion parameters in suspected lesions. We present data on 19 patients with histologically proven parathyroid adenomas. We find a strong correlation between 2 perfusion parameters when comparing parathyroid adenomas and thyroid tissue: parathyroid adenomas show a 55% increase in blood flow (BF) () and a 50% increase in blood volume (BV) () as compared to normal thyroid tissue. The analysis of the ROC curve for the different perfusion parameters demonstrates a significantly high area under the curve for BF and BV, confirming these two perfusion parameters to be a possible discriminating tool to discern between parathyroid adenomas and thyroid tissue. These findings can help to discern parathyroid from thyroid tissue and may aid in the detection of parathyroid adenomas.
MRI Reconstruction with Separate Magnitude and Phase Priors Based on Dual-Tree Complex Wavelet Transform
The methods of compressed sensing magnetic resonance imaging (CS-MRI) can be divided into two categories roughly based on the number of target variables. One group devotes to estimating the complex-valued MRI image. And the other calculates the magnitude and phase parts of the complex-valued MRI image, respectively, by enforcing separate penalties on them. We propose a new CS-based method based on dual-tree complex wavelet (DT CWT) sparsity, which is under the frame of the second class of CS-MRI. Owing to the separate regularization frame, this method reduces the impact of the phase jumps (that means the jumps or discontinuities of phase values) on magnitude reconstruction. Moreover, by virtue of the excellent features of DT CWT, such as nonoscillating envelope of coefficients and multidirectional selectivity, the proposed method is capable of capturing more details in the magnitude and phase images. The experimental results show that the proposed method recovers the image contour and edges information well and can eliminate the artifacts in magnitude results caused by phase jumps.