Deep-learning models have been successful in biomedical image segmentation. To generalize for real-world deployment, test-time augmentation (TTA) methods are often used to transform the test image into different versions that are hopefully closer to the training domain. Unfortunately, due to the vast diversity of instance scale and image styles, many augmented test images produce undesirable results, thus lowering the overall performance. This work proposes a new TTA framework, S$^3$-TTA, which selects the suitable image scale and style for each test image based on a transformation consistency metric. In addition, S$^3$-TTA constructs an end-to-end augmentation-segmentation joint-training pipeline to ensure a task-oriented augmentation. On public benchmarks for cell and lung segmentation, S$^3$-TTA demonstrates improvements over the prior art by 3.4% and 1.3%, respectively, by simply augmenting the input data in testing phase.
While self-supervised learning (SSL) algorithms have been widely used to pre-train deep models, few efforts  have been done to improve representation learning of X-ray image analysis with SSL pre-trained models. In this work, we study a novel self-supervised pre-training pipeline, namely Multi-task Self-super-vised Continual Learning (MUSCLE), for multiple medical imaging tasks, such as classification and segmentation, using X-ray images collected from multiple body parts, including heads, lungs, and bones. Specifically, MUSCLE aggregates X-rays collected from multiple body parts for MoCo-based representation learning, and adopts a well-designed continual learning (CL) procedure to further pre-train the backbone subject various X-ray analysis tasks jointly. Certain strategies for image pre-processing, learning schedules, and regularization have been used to solve data heterogeneity, overfitting, and catastrophic forgetting problems for multi-task/dataset learning in MUSCLE.We evaluate MUSCLE using 9 real-world X-ray datasets with various tasks, including pneumonia classification, skeletal abnormality classification, lung segmentation, and tuberculosis (TB) detection. Comparisons against other pre-trained models  confirm the proof-of-concept that self-supervised multi-task/dataset continual pre-training could boost the performance of X-ray image analysis.
Unpaired image-to-image translation (UNIT) aims to map images between two visual domains without paired training data. However, given a UNIT model trained on certain domains, it is difficult for current methods to incorporate new domains because they often need to train the full model on both existing and new domains. To address this problem, we propose a new domain-scalable UNIT method, termed as latent space anchoring, which can be efficiently extended to new visual domains and does not need to fine-tune encoders and decoders of existing domains. Our method anchors images of different domains to the same latent space of frozen GANs by learning lightweight encoder and regressor models to reconstruct single-domain images. In the inference phase, the learned encoders and decoders of different domains can be arbitrarily combined to translate images between any two domains without fine-tuning. Experiments on various datasets show that the proposed method achieves superior performance on both standard and domain-scalable UNIT tasks in comparison with the state-of-the-art methods.
Recent deep learning methods have achieved promising results in image shadow removal. However, most of the existing approaches focus on working locally within shadow and non-shadow regions, resulting in severe artifacts around the shadow boundaries as well as inconsistent illumination between shadow and non-shadow regions. It is still challenging for the deep shadow removal model to exploit the global contextual correlation between shadow and non-shadow regions. In this work, we first propose a Retinex-based shadow model, from which we derive a novel transformer-based network, dubbed ShandowFormer, to exploit non-shadow regions to help shadow region restoration. A multi-scale channel attention framework is employed to hierarchically capture the global information. Based on that, we propose a Shadow-Interaction Module (SIM) with Shadow-Interaction Attention (SIA) in the bottleneck stage to effectively model the context correlation between shadow and non-shadow regions. We conduct extensive experiments on three popular public datasets, including ISTD, ISTD+, and SRD, to evaluate the proposed method. Our method achieves state-of-the-art performance by using up to 150X fewer model parameters.
While deep learning succeeds in a wide range of tasks, it highly depends on the massive collection of annotated data which is expensive and time-consuming. To lower the cost of data annotation, active learning has been proposed to interactively query an oracle to annotate a small proportion of informative samples in an unlabeled dataset. Inspired by the fact that the samples with higher loss are usually more informative to the model than the samples with lower loss, in this paper we present a novel deep active learning approach that queries the oracle for data annotation when the unlabeled sample is believed to incorporate high loss. The core of our approach is a measurement Temporal Output Discrepancy (TOD) that estimates the sample loss by evaluating the discrepancy of outputs given by models at different optimization steps. Our theoretical investigation shows that TOD lower-bounds the accumulated sample loss thus it can be used to select informative unlabeled samples. On basis of TOD, we further develop an effective unlabeled data sampling strategy as well as an unsupervised learning criterion for active learning. Due to the simplicity of TOD, our methods are efficient, flexible, and task-agnostic. Extensive experimental results demonstrate that our approach achieves superior performances than the state-of-the-art active learning methods on image classification and semantic segmentation tasks. In addition, we show that TOD can be utilized to select the best model of potentially the highest testing accuracy from a pool of candidate models.
The mechanism of existing style transfer algorithms is by minimizing a hybrid loss function to push the generated image toward high similarities in both content and style. However, this type of approach cannot guarantee visual fidelity, i.e., the generated artworks should be indistinguishable from real ones. In this paper, we devise a new style transfer framework called QuantArt for high visual-fidelity stylization. QuantArt pushes the latent representation of the generated artwork toward the centroids of the real artwork distribution with vector quantization. By fusing the quantized and continuous latent representations, QuantArt allows flexible control over the generated artworks in terms of content preservation, style similarity, and visual fidelity. Experiments on various style transfer settings show that our QuantArt framework achieves significantly higher visual fidelity compared with the existing style transfer methods.
Recent deep learning methods have achieved promising results in image shadow removal. However, their restored images still suffer from unsatisfactory boundary artifacts, due to the lack of degradation prior embedding and the deficiency in modeling capacity. Our work addresses these issues by proposing a unified diffusion framework that integrates both the image and degradation priors for highly effective shadow removal. In detail, we first propose a shadow degradation model, which inspires us to build a novel unrolling diffusion model, dubbed ShandowDiffusion. It remarkably improves the model's capacity in shadow removal via progressively refining the desired output with both degradation prior and diffusive generative prior, which by nature can serve as a new strong baseline for image restoration. Furthermore, ShadowDiffusion progressively refines the estimated shadow mask as an auxiliary task of the diffusion generator, which leads to more accurate and robust shadow-free image generation. We conduct extensive experiments on three popular public datasets, including ISTD, ISTD+, and SRD, to validate our method's effectiveness. Compared to the state-of-the-art methods, our model achieves a significant improvement in terms of PSNR, increasing from 31.69dB to 34.73dB over SRD dataset.
Active learning promises to improve annotation efficiency by iteratively selecting the most important data to be annotated first. However, we uncover a striking contradiction to this promise: active learning fails to select data as efficiently as random selection at the first few choices. We identify this as the cold start problem in vision active learning, caused by a biased and outlier initial query. This paper seeks to address the cold start problem by exploiting the three advantages of contrastive learning: (1) no annotation is required; (2) label diversity is ensured by pseudo-labels to mitigate bias; (3) typical data is determined by contrastive features to reduce outliers. Experiments are conducted on CIFAR-10-LT and three medical imaging datasets (i.e. Colon Pathology, Abdominal CT, and Blood Cell Microscope). Our initial query not only significantly outperforms existing active querying strategies but also surpasses random selection by a large margin. We foresee our solution to the cold start problem as a simple yet strong baseline to choose the initial query for vision active learning. Code is available: https://github.com/c-liangyu/CSVAL
Instance segmentation for unlabeled imaging modalities is a challenging but essential task as collecting expert annotation can be expensive and time-consuming. Existing works segment a new modality by either deploying a pre-trained model optimized on diverse training data or conducting domain translation and image segmentation as two independent steps. In this work, we propose a novel Cyclic Segmentation Generative Adversarial Network (CySGAN) that conducts image translation and instance segmentation jointly using a unified framework. Besides the CycleGAN losses for image translation and supervised losses for the annotated source domain, we introduce additional self-supervised and segmentation-based adversarial objectives to improve the model performance by leveraging unlabeled target domain images. We benchmark our approach on the task of 3D neuronal nuclei segmentation with annotated electron microscopy (EM) images and unlabeled expansion microscopy (ExM) data. Our CySGAN outperforms both pretrained generalist models and the baselines that sequentially conduct image translation and segmentation. Our implementation and the newly collected, densely annotated ExM nuclei dataset, named NucExM, are available at https://connectomics-bazaar.github.io/proj/CySGAN/index.html.