A transversal approach for patch-based label fusion via matrix completion

Gerard Sanroma, Guorong Wu, Yaozong Gao, Kim Han Thung, Yanrong Guo, Dinggang Shen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Recently, multi-atlas patch-based label fusion has received an increasing interest in the medical image segmentation field. After warping the anatomical labels from the atlas images to the target image by registration, label fusion is the key step to determine the latent label for each target image point. Two popular types of patch-based label fusion approaches are (1) reconstruction-based approaches that compute the target labels as a weighted average of atlas labels, where the weights are derived by reconstructing the target image patch using the atlas image patches; and (2) classification-based approaches that determine the target label as a mapping of the target image patch, where the mapping function is often learned using the atlas image patches and their corresponding labels. Both approaches have their advantages and limitations. In this paper, we propose a novel patch-based label fusion method to combine the above two types of approaches via matrix completion (and hence, we call it transversal). As we will show, our method overcomes the individual limitations of both reconstruction-based and classification-based approaches. Since the labeling confidences may vary across the target image points, we further propose a sequential labeling framework that first labels the highly confident points and then gradually labels more challenging points in an iterative manner, guided by the label information determined in the previous iterations. We demonstrate the performance of our novel label fusion method in segmenting the hippocampus in the ADNI dataset, subcortical and limbic structures in the LONI dataset, and mid-brain structures in the SATA dataset. We achieve more accurate segmentation results than both reconstruction-based and classification-based approaches. Our label fusion method is also ranked 1st in the online SATA Multi-Atlas Segmentation Challenge.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)135-148
Number of pages14
JournalMedical Image Analysis
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Aug 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier B.V.


  • Label fusion
  • Matrix completion
  • Multiple-atlas segmentation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Health Informatics
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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