Learning new parts for landmark localization in whole-body CT scans.
Potesil V., Kadir T., Brady M.
The goal of this work is to reliably and accurately localize anatomical landmarks in 3-D computed tomography scans, particularly for the deformable registration of whole-body scans, which show huge variation in posture, and the spatial distribution of anatomical features. Parts-based graphical models (GM) have shown attractive properties for this task because they capture naturally anatomical relationships between landmarks. Unfortunately, standard GMs are learned from manually annotated training images and the quantity of landmarks is limited by the high cost of expert annotation. We propose a novel method that automatically learns new corresponding landmarks from a database of 3-D whole-body CT scans, using a limited initial set of expert-labeled ground-truth landmarks. The newly learned landmarks, called B-landmarks, are used to build enriched GMs. We compare our method of deformable registration based on such GM landmarks to a conventional deformable registration method and to a "baseline" state-of-the-art GM. The results show our method finds new relevant anatomical correspondences and improves by up to 35% the matching accuracy of highly variable skeletal and soft-tissue landmarks of clinical interest.