We address the problem of segmenting 3D multi-modal medical images in scenarios where very few labeled examples are available for training. Leveraging the recent success of adversarial learning for semi-supervised segmentation, we propose a novel method based on Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs) to train a segmentation model with both labeled and unlabeled images. The proposed method prevents over-fitting by learning to discriminate between true and fake patches obtained by a generator network. Our work extends current adversarial learning approaches, which focus on 2D single-modality images, to the more challenging context of 3D volumes of multiple modalities. The proposed method is evaluated on the problem of segmenting brain MRI from the iSEG-2017 and MRBrainS 2013 datasets. Significant performance improvement is reported, compared to state-of-art segmentation networks trained in a fully-supervised manner. In addition, our work presents a comprehensive analysis of different GAN architectures for semi-supervised segmentation, showing recent techniques like feature matching to yield a higher performance than conventional adversarial training approaches. Our code is publicly available at https://github.com/arnab39/FewShot_GAN-Unet3D

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对抗学习是一种机器学习技术,旨在通过提供欺骗性输入来欺骗模型。最常见的原因是导致机器学习模型出现故障。大多数机器学习技术旨在处理特定的问题集,其中从相同的统计分布(IID)生成训练和测试数据。当这些模型应用于现实世界时,对手可能会提供违反该统计假设的数据。可以安排此数据来利用特定漏洞并破坏结果。

Applying artificial intelligence techniques in medical imaging is one of the most promising areas in medicine. However, most of the recent success in this area highly relies on large amounts of carefully annotated data, whereas annotating medical images is a costly process. In this paper, we propose a novel method, called FocalMix, which, to the best of our knowledge, is the first to leverage recent advances in semi-supervised learning (SSL) for 3D medical image detection. We conducted extensive experiments on two widely used datasets for lung nodule detection, LUNA16 and NLST. Results show that our proposed SSL methods can achieve a substantial improvement of up to 17.3% over state-of-the-art supervised learning approaches with 400 unlabeled CT scans.

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In this work, we study the problem of training deep networks for semantic image segmentation using only a fraction of annotated images, which may significantly reduce human annotation efforts. Particularly, we propose a strategy that exploits the unpaired image style transfer capabilities of CycleGAN in semi-supervised segmentation. Unlike recent works using adversarial learning for semi-supervised segmentation, we enforce cycle consistency to learn a bidirectional mapping between unpaired images and segmentation masks. This adds an unsupervised regularization effect that boosts the segmentation performance when annotated data is limited. Experiments on three different public segmentation benchmarks (PASCAL VOC 2012, Cityscapes and ACDC) demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method. The proposed model achieves 2-4% of improvement with respect to the baseline and outperforms recent approaches for this task, particularly in low labeled data regime.

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Existing Earth Vision datasets are either suitable for semantic segmentation or object detection. In this work, we introduce the first benchmark dataset for instance segmentation in aerial imagery that combines instance-level object detection and pixel-level segmentation tasks. In comparison to instance segmentation in natural scenes, aerial images present unique challenges e.g., a huge number of instances per image, large object-scale variations and abundant tiny objects. Our large-scale and densely annotated Instance Segmentation in Aerial Images Dataset (iSAID) comes with 655,451 object instances for 15 categories across 2,806 high-resolution images. Such precise per-pixel annotations for each instance ensure accurate localization that is essential for detailed scene analysis. Compared to existing small-scale aerial image based instance segmentation datasets, iSAID contains 15$\times$ the number of object categories and 5$\times$ the number of instances. We benchmark our dataset using two popular instance segmentation approaches for natural images, namely Mask R-CNN and PANet. In our experiments we show that direct application of off-the-shelf Mask R-CNN and PANet on aerial images provide suboptimal instance segmentation results, thus requiring specialized solutions from the research community. The dataset is publicly available at: https://captain-whu.github.io/iSAID/index.html

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Sufficient supervised information is crucial for any machine learning models to boost performance. However, labeling data is expensive and sometimes difficult to obtain. Active learning is an approach to acquire annotations for data from a human oracle by selecting informative samples with a high probability to enhance performance. In recent emerging studies, a generative adversarial network (GAN) has been integrated with active learning to generate good candidates to be presented to the oracle. In this paper, we propose a novel model that is able to obtain labels for data in a cheaper manner without the need to query an oracle. In the model, a novel reward for each sample is devised to measure the degree of uncertainty, which is obtained from a classifier trained with existing labeled data. This reward is used to guide a conditional GAN to generate informative samples with a higher probability for a certain label. With extensive evaluations, we have confirmed the effectiveness of the model, showing that the generated samples are capable of improving the classification performance in popular image classification tasks.

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Biomedical image segmentation is an important task in many medical applications. Segmentation methods based on convolutional neural networks attain state-of-the-art accuracy; however, they typically rely on supervised training with large labeled datasets. Labeling datasets of medical images requires significant expertise and time, and is infeasible at large scales. To tackle the lack of labeled data, researchers use techniques such as hand-engineered preprocessing steps, hand-tuned architectures, and data augmentation. However, these techniques involve costly engineering efforts, and are typically dataset-specific. We present an automated data augmentation method for medical images. We demonstrate our method on the task of segmenting magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) brain scans, focusing on the one-shot segmentation scenario -- a practical challenge in many medical applications. Our method requires only a single segmented scan, and leverages other unlabeled scans in a semi-supervised approach. We learn a model of transforms from the images, and use the model along with the labeled example to synthesize additional labeled training examples for supervised segmentation. Each transform is comprised of a spatial deformation field and an intensity change, enabling the synthesis of complex effects such as variations in anatomy and image acquisition procedures. Augmenting the training of a supervised segmenter with these new examples provides significant improvements over state-of-the-art methods for one-shot biomedical image segmentation. Our code is available at https://github.com/xamyzhao/brainstorm.

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Semantic segmentation is one of the basic topics in computer vision, it aims to assign semantic labels to every pixel of an image. Unbalanced semantic label distribution could have a negative influence on segmentation accuracy. In this paper, we investigate using data augmentation approach to balance the semantic label distribution in order to improve segmentation performance. We propose using generative adversarial networks (GANs) to generate realistic images for improving the performance of semantic segmentation networks. Experimental results show that the proposed method can not only improve segmentation performance on those classes with low accuracy, but also obtain 1.3% to 2.1% increase in average segmentation accuracy. It shows that this augmentation method can boost accuracy and be easily applicable to any other segmentation models.

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3D image segmentation plays an important role in biomedical image analysis. Many 2D and 3D deep learning models have achieved state-of-the-art segmentation performance on 3D biomedical image datasets. Yet, 2D and 3D models have their own strengths and weaknesses, and by unifying them together, one may be able to achieve more accurate results. In this paper, we propose a new ensemble learning framework for 3D biomedical image segmentation that combines the merits of 2D and 3D models. First, we develop a fully convolutional network based meta-learner to learn how to improve the results from 2D and 3D models (base-learners). Then, to minimize over-fitting for our sophisticated meta-learner, we devise a new training method that uses the results of the base-learners as multiple versions of "ground truths". Furthermore, since our new meta-learner training scheme does not depend on manual annotation, it can utilize abundant unlabeled 3D image data to further improve the model. Extensive experiments on two public datasets (the HVSMR 2016 Challenge dataset and the mouse piriform cortex dataset) show that our approach is effective under fully-supervised, semi-supervised, and transductive settings, and attains superior performance over state-of-the-art image segmentation methods.

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Deep learning has shown promising results in medical image analysis, however, the lack of very large annotated datasets confines its full potential. Although transfer learning with ImageNet pre-trained classification models can alleviate the problem, constrained image sizes and model complexities can lead to unnecessary increase in computational cost and decrease in performance. As many common morphological features are usually shared by different classification tasks of an organ, it is greatly beneficial if we can extract such features to improve classification with limited samples. Therefore, inspired by the idea of curriculum learning, we propose a strategy for building medical image classifiers using features from segmentation networks. By using a segmentation network pre-trained on similar data as the classification task, the machine can first learn the simpler shape and structural concepts before tackling the actual classification problem which usually involves more complicated concepts. Using our proposed framework on a 3D three-class brain tumor type classification problem, we achieved 82% accuracy on 191 testing samples with 91 training samples. When applying to a 2D nine-class cardiac semantic level classification problem, we achieved 86% accuracy on 263 testing samples with 108 training samples. Comparisons with ImageNet pre-trained classifiers and classifiers trained from scratch are presented.

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Convolutional networks (ConvNets) have achieved great successes in various challenging vision tasks. However, the performance of ConvNets would degrade when encountering the domain shift. The domain adaptation is more significant while challenging in the field of biomedical image analysis, where cross-modality data have largely different distributions. Given that annotating the medical data is especially expensive, the supervised transfer learning approaches are not quite optimal. In this paper, we propose an unsupervised domain adaptation framework with adversarial learning for cross-modality biomedical image segmentations. Specifically, our model is based on a dilated fully convolutional network for pixel-wise prediction. Moreover, we build a plug-and-play domain adaptation module (DAM) to map the target input to features which are aligned with source domain feature space. A domain critic module (DCM) is set up for discriminating the feature space of both domains. We optimize the DAM and DCM via an adversarial loss without using any target domain label. Our proposed method is validated by adapting a ConvNet trained with MRI images to unpaired CT data for cardiac structures segmentations, and achieved very promising results.

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Recent advance in fluorescence microscopy enables acquisition of 3D image volumes with better quality and deeper penetration into tissue. Segmentation is a required step to characterize and analyze biological structures in the images. 3D segmentation using deep learning has achieved promising results in microscopy images. One issue is that deep learning techniques require a large set of groundtruth data which is impractical to annotate manually for microscopy volumes. This paper describes a 3D nuclei segmentation method using 3D convolutional neural networks. A set of synthetic volumes and the corresponding groundtruth volumes are generated automatically using a generative adversarial network. Segmentation results demonstrate that our proposed method is capable of segmenting nuclei successfully in 3D for various data sets.

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