Breast cancer is a major cause of cancer death among women, emphasising the importance of early detection for improved treatment outcomes and quality of life. Mammography, the primary diagnostic imaging test, poses challenges due to the high variability and patterns in mammograms. Double reading of mammograms is recommended in many screening programs to improve diagnostic accuracy but increases radiologists' workload. Researchers explore Machine Learning models to support expert decision-making. Stand-alone models have shown comparable or superior performance to radiologists, but some studies note decreased sensitivity with multiple datasets, indicating the need for high generalisation and robustness models. This work devises MammoDG, a novel deep-learning framework for generalisable and reliable analysis of cross-domain multi-center mammography data. MammoDG leverages multi-view mammograms and a novel contrastive mechanism to enhance generalisation capabilities. Extensive validation demonstrates MammoDG's superiority, highlighting the critical importance of domain generalisation for trustworthy mammography analysis in imaging protocol variations.
In vivo cardiac diffusion tensor imaging (cDTI) is a promising Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) technique for evaluating the micro-structure of myocardial tissue in the living heart, providing insights into cardiac function and enabling the development of innovative therapeutic strategies. However, the integration of cDTI into routine clinical practice is challenging due to the technical obstacles involved in the acquisition, such as low signal-to-noise ratio and long scanning times. In this paper, we investigate and implement three different types of deep learning-based MRI reconstruction models for cDTI reconstruction. We evaluate the performance of these models based on reconstruction quality assessment and diffusion tensor parameter assessment. Our results indicate that the models we discussed in this study can be applied for clinical use at an acceleration factor (AF) of $\times 2$ and $\times 4$, with the D5C5 model showing superior fidelity for reconstruction and the SwinMR model providing higher perceptual scores. There is no statistical difference with the reference for all diffusion tensor parameters at AF $\times 2$ or most DT parameters at AF $\times 4$, and the quality of most diffusion tensor parameter maps are visually acceptable. SwinMR is recommended as the optimal approach for reconstruction at AF $\times 2$ and AF $\times 4$. However, we believed the models discussed in this studies are not prepared for clinical use at a higher AF. At AF $\times 8$, the performance of all models discussed remains limited, with only half of the diffusion tensor parameters being recovered to a level with no statistical difference from the reference. Some diffusion tensor parameter maps even provide wrong and misleading information.
Diffusion Probabilistic Models have recently shown remarkable performance in generative image modeling, attracting significant attention in the computer vision community. However, while a substantial amount of diffusion-based research has focused on generative tasks, few studies have applied diffusion models to general medical image classification. In this paper, we propose the first diffusion-based model (named DiffMIC) to address general medical image classification by eliminating unexpected noise and perturbations in medical images and robustly capturing semantic representation. To achieve this goal, we devise a dual conditional guidance strategy that conditions each diffusion step with multiple granularities to improve step-wise regional attention. Furthermore, we propose learning the mutual information in each granularity by enforcing Maximum-Mean Discrepancy regularization during the diffusion forward process. We evaluate the effectiveness of our DiffMIC on three medical classification tasks with different image modalities, including placental maturity grading on ultrasound images, skin lesion classification using dermatoscopic images, and diabetic retinopathy grading using fundus images. Our experimental results demonstrate that DiffMIC outperforms state-of-the-art methods by a significant margin, indicating the universality and effectiveness of the proposed model. Our code will be publicly available at https://github.com/scott-yjyang/DiffMIC.
Nuclear detection, segmentation and morphometric profiling are essential in helping us further understand the relationship between histology and patient outcome. To drive innovation in this area, we setup a community-wide challenge using the largest available dataset of its kind to assess nuclear segmentation and cellular composition. Our challenge, named CoNIC, stimulated the development of reproducible algorithms for cellular recognition with real-time result inspection on public leaderboards. We conducted an extensive post-challenge analysis based on the top-performing models using 1,658 whole-slide images of colon tissue. With around 700 million detected nuclei per model, associated features were used for dysplasia grading and survival analysis, where we demonstrated that the challenge's improvement over the previous state-of-the-art led to significant boosts in downstream performance. Our findings also suggest that eosinophils and neutrophils play an important role in the tumour microevironment. We release challenge models and WSI-level results to foster the development of further methods for biomarker discovery.
Surgical action triplet recognition provides a better understanding of the surgical scene. This task is of high relevance as it provides to the surgeon with context-aware support and safety. The current go-to strategy for improving performance is the development of new network mechanisms. However, the performance of current state-of-the-art techniques is substantially lower than other surgical tasks. Why is this happening? This is the question that we address in this work. We present the first study to understand the failure of existing deep learning models through the lens of robustness and explainabilty. Firstly, we study current existing models under weak and strong $\delta-$perturbations via adversarial optimisation scheme. We then provide the failure modes via feature based explanations. Our study revels that the key for improving performance and increasing reliability is in the core and spurious attributes. Our work opens the door to more trustworthiness and reliability deep learning models in surgical science.
The automatic early diagnosis of prodromal stages of Alzheimer's disease is of great relevance for patient treatment to improve quality of life. We address this problem as a multi-modal classification task. Multi-modal data provides richer and complementary information. However, existing techniques only consider either lower order relations between the data and single/multi-modal imaging data. In this work, we introduce a novel semi-supervised hypergraph learning framework for Alzheimer's disease diagnosis. Our framework allows for higher-order relations among multi-modal imaging and non-imaging data whilst requiring a tiny labelled set. Firstly, we introduce a dual embedding strategy for constructing a robust hypergraph that preserves the data semantics. We achieve this by enforcing perturbation invariance at the image and graph levels using a contrastive based mechanism. Secondly, we present a dynamically adjusted hypergraph diffusion model, via a semi-explicit flow, to improve the predictive uncertainty. We demonstrate, through our experiments, that our framework is able to outperform current techniques for Alzheimer's disease diagnosis.
Medical image registration and segmentation are critical tasks for several clinical procedures. Manual realisation of those tasks is time-consuming and the quality is highly dependent on the level of expertise of the physician. To mitigate that laborious task, automatic tools have been developed where the majority of solutions are supervised techniques. However, in medical domain, the strong assumption of having a well-representative ground truth is far from being realistic. To overcome this challenge, unsupervised techniques have been investigated. However, they are still limited in performance and they fail to produce plausible results. In this work, we propose a novel unified unsupervised framework for image registration and segmentation that we called PC-SwinMorph. The core of our framework is two patch-based strategies, where we demonstrate that patch representation is key for performance gain. We first introduce a patch-based contrastive strategy that enforces locality conditions and richer feature representation. Secondly, we utilise a 3D window/shifted-window multi-head self-attention module as a patch stitching strategy to eliminate artifacts from the patch splitting. We demonstrate, through a set of numerical and visual results, that our technique outperforms current state-of-the-art unsupervised techniques.
We address the problem of automated nuclear segmentation, classification, and quantification from Haematoxylin and Eosin stained histology images, which is of great relevance for several downstream computational pathology applications. In this work, we present a solution framed as a simultaneous semantic and instance segmentation framework. Our solution is part of the Colon Nuclei Identification and Counting (CoNIC) Challenge. We first train a semantic and instance segmentation model separately. Our framework uses as backbone HoverNet and Cascade Mask-RCNN models. We then ensemble the results with a custom Non-Maximum Suppression embedding (NMS). In our framework, the semantic model computes a class prediction for the cells whilst the instance model provides a refined segmentation. We demonstrate, through our experimental results, that our model outperforms the provided baselines by a large margin.
Graph vertex embeddings based on random walks have become increasingly influential in recent years, showing good performance in several tasks as they efficiently transform a graph into a more computationally digestible format while preserving relevant information. However, the theoretical properties of such algorithms, in particular the influence of hyperparameters and of the graph structure on their convergence behaviour, have so far not been well-understood. In this work, we provide a theoretical analysis for random-walks based embeddings techniques. Firstly, we prove that, under some weak assumptions, vertex embeddings derived from random walks do indeed converge both in the single limit of the number of random walks $N \to \infty$ and in the double limit of both $N$ and the length of each random walk $L\to\infty$. Secondly, we derive concentration bounds quantifying the converge rate of the corpora for the single and double limits. Thirdly, we use these results to derive a heuristic for choosing the hyperparameters $N$ and $L$. We validate and illustrate the practical importance of our findings with a range of numerical and visual experiments on several graphs drawn from real-world applications.
Semi-supervised learning has received a lot of recent attention as it alleviates the need for large amounts of labelled data which can often be expensive, requires expert knowledge and be time consuming to collect. Recent developments in deep semi-supervised classification have reached unprecedented performance and the gap between supervised and semi-supervised learning is ever-decreasing. This improvement in performance has been based on the inclusion of numerous technical tricks, strong augmentation techniques and costly optimisation schemes with multi-term loss functions. We propose a new framework, LaplaceNet, for deep semi-supervised classification that has a greatly reduced model complexity. We utilise a hybrid energy-neural network where graph based pseudo-labels, generated by minimising the graphical Laplacian, are used to iteratively improve a neural-network backbone. Our model outperforms state-of-the-art methods for deep semi-supervised classification, over several benchmark datasets. Furthermore, we consider the application of strong-augmentations to neural networks theoretically and justify the use of a multi-sampling approach for semi-supervised learning. We demonstrate, through rigorous experimentation, that a multi-sampling augmentation approach improves generalisation and reduces the sensitivity of the network to augmentation.