This work systematically investigates the oxidation of extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) under accelerated storage conditions with UV absorption and total fluorescence spectroscopy. With the large amount of data collected, it proposes a method to monitor the oil's quality based on machine learning applied to highly-aggregated data. EVOO is a high-quality vegetable oil that has earned worldwide reputation for its numerous health benefits and excellent taste. Despite its outstanding quality, EVOO degrades over time owing to oxidation, which can affect both its health qualities and flavour. Therefore, it is highly relevant to quantify the effects of oxidation on EVOO and develop methods to assess it that can be easily implemented under field conditions, rather than in specialized laboratories. The following study demonstrates that fluorescence spectroscopy has the capability to monitor the effect of oxidation and assess the quality of EVOO, even when the data are highly aggregated. It shows that complex laboratory equipment is not necessary to exploit fluorescence spectroscopy using the proposed method and that cost-effective solutions, which can be used in-field by non-scientists, could provide an easily-accessible assessment of the quality of EVOO.
Data augmentation (DA) is a key factor in medical image analysis, such as in prostate cancer (PCa) detection on magnetic resonance images. State-of-the-art computer-aided diagnosis systems still rely on simplistic spatial transformations to preserve the pathological label post transformation. However, such augmentations do not substantially increase the organ as well as tumor shape variability in the training set, limiting the model's ability to generalize to unseen cases with more diverse localized soft-tissue deformations. We propose a new anatomy-informed transformation that leverages information from adjacent organs to simulate typical physiological deformations of the prostate and generates unique lesion shapes without altering their label. Due to its lightweight computational requirements, it can be easily integrated into common DA frameworks. We demonstrate the effectiveness of our augmentation on a dataset of 774 biopsy-confirmed examinations, by evaluating a state-of-the-art method for PCa detection with different augmentation settings.
Independently trained machine learning models tend to learn similar features. Given an ensemble of independently trained models, this results in correlated predictions and common failure modes. Previous attempts focusing on decorrelation of output predictions or logits yielded mixed results, particularly due to their reduction in model accuracy caused by conflicting optimization objectives. In this paper, we propose the novel idea of utilizing methods of the representational similarity field to promote dissimilarity during training instead of measuring similarity of trained models. To this end, we promote intermediate representations to be dissimilar at different depths between architectures, with the goal of learning robust ensembles with disjoint failure modes. We show that highly dissimilar intermediate representations result in less correlated output predictions and slightly lower error consistency, resulting in higher ensemble accuracy. With this, we shine first light on the connection between intermediate representations and their impact on the output predictions.
* The Second Workshop on Spurious Correlations, Invariance and
Stability at ICML 2023
The accurate detection of suspicious regions in medical images is an error-prone and time-consuming process required by many routinely performed diagnostic procedures. To support clinicians during this difficult task, several automated solutions were proposed relying on complex methods with many hyperparameters. In this study, we investigate the feasibility of DEtection TRansformer (DETR) models for volumetric medical object detection. In contrast to previous works, these models directly predict a set of objects without relying on the design of anchors or manual heuristics such as non-maximum-suppression to detect objects. We show by conducting extensive experiments with three models, namely DETR, Conditional DETR, and DINO DETR on four data sets (CADA, RibFrac, KiTS19, and LIDC) that these set prediction models can perform on par with or even better than currently existing methods. DINO DETR, the best-performing model in our experiments demonstrates this by outperforming a strong anchor-based one-stage detector, Retina U-Net, on three out of four data sets.
* BVM 2023 Oral. Marc K. Ickler and Michael Baumgartner contributed
Owing to success in the data-rich domain of natural images, Transformers have recently become popular in medical image segmentation. However, the pairing of Transformers with convolutional blocks in varying architectural permutations leaves their relative effectiveness to open interpretation. We introduce Transformer Ablations that replace the Transformer blocks with plain linear operators to quantify this effectiveness. With experiments on 8 models on 2 medical image segmentation tasks, we explore -- 1) the replaceable nature of Transformer-learnt representations, 2) Transformer capacity alone cannot prevent representational replaceability and works in tandem with effective design, 3) The mere existence of explicit feature hierarchies in transformer blocks is more beneficial than accompanying self-attention modules, 4) Major spatial downsampling before Transformer modules should be used with caution.
* Accepted in NeurIPS 2022 workshop, Medical Imaging Meets NeurIPS
The medical imaging community generates a wealth of datasets, many of which are openly accessible and annotated for specific diseases and tasks such as multi-organ or lesion segmentation. Current practices continue to limit model training and supervised pre-training to one or a few similar datasets, neglecting the synergistic potential of other available annotated data. We propose MultiTalent, a method that leverages multiple CT datasets with diverse and conflicting class definitions to train a single model for a comprehensive structure segmentation. Our results demonstrate improved segmentation performance compared to previous related approaches, systematically, also compared to single dataset training using state-of-the-art methods, especially for lesion segmentation and other challenging structures. We show that MultiTalent also represents a powerful foundation model that offers a superior pre-training for various segmentation tasks compared to commonly used supervised or unsupervised pre-training baselines. Our findings offer a new direction for the medical imaging community to effectively utilize the wealth of available data for improved segmentation performance. The code and model weights will be published here: [tba]
There has been exploding interest in embracing Transformer-based architectures for medical image segmentation. However, the lack of large-scale annotated medical datasets make achieving performances equivalent to those in natural images challenging. Convolutional networks, in contrast, have higher inductive biases and consequently, are easily trainable to high performance. Recently, the ConvNeXt architecture attempted to modernize the standard ConvNet by mirroring Transformer blocks. In this work, we improve upon this to design a modernized and scalable convolutional architecture customized to challenges of data-scarce medical settings. We introduce MedNeXt, a Transformer-inspired large kernel segmentation network which introduces - 1) A fully ConvNeXt 3D Encoder-Decoder Network for medical image segmentation, 2) Residual ConvNeXt up and downsampling blocks to preserve semantic richness across scales, 3) A novel technique to iteratively increase kernel sizes by upsampling small kernel networks, to prevent performance saturation on limited medical data, 4) Compound scaling at multiple levels (depth, width, kernel size) of MedNeXt. This leads to state-of-the-art performance on 4 tasks on CT and MRI modalities and varying dataset sizes, representing a modernized deep architecture for medical image segmentation.
The accurate detection of mediastinal lesions is one of the rarely explored medical object detection problems. In this work, we applied a modified version of the self-configuring method nnDetection to the Mediastinal Lesion Analysis (MELA) Challenge 2022. By incorporating automatically generated pseudo masks, training high capacity models with large patch sizes in a multi GPU setup and an adapted augmentation scheme to reduce localization errors caused by rotations, our method achieved an excellent FROC score of 0.9922 at IoU 0.10 and 0.9880 at IoU 0.3 in our cross-validation experiments. The submitted ensemble ranked third in the competition with a FROC score of 0.9897 on the MELA challenge leaderboard.
* Published in "Lesion Segmentation in Surgical and Diagnostic
Validation metrics are key for the reliable tracking of scientific progress and for bridging the current chasm between artificial intelligence (AI) research and its translation into practice. However, increasing evidence shows that particularly in image analysis, metrics are often chosen inadequately in relation to the underlying research problem. This could be attributed to a lack of accessibility of metric-related knowledge: While taking into account the individual strengths, weaknesses, and limitations of validation metrics is a critical prerequisite to making educated choices, the relevant knowledge is currently scattered and poorly accessible to individual researchers. Based on a multi-stage Delphi process conducted by a multidisciplinary expert consortium as well as extensive community feedback, the present work provides the first reliable and comprehensive common point of access to information on pitfalls related to validation metrics in image analysis. Focusing on biomedical image analysis but with the potential of transfer to other fields, the addressed pitfalls generalize across application domains and are categorized according to a newly created, domain-agnostic taxonomy. To facilitate comprehension, illustrations and specific examples accompany each pitfall. As a structured body of information accessible to researchers of all levels of expertise, this work enhances global comprehension of a key topic in image analysis validation.