Automatic brain and tumor segmentation

Nathan Moon, Elizabeth Bullitt, Koen van Leemput, Guido Gerig

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Combining image segmentation based on statistical classification with a geometric prior has been shown to significantly increase robustness and reproducibility. Using a probabilistic geometric model of sought structures and image registration serves both initialization of probability density functions and definition of spatial constraints. A strong spatial prior, however, prevents segmentation of structures that are not part of the model. In practical applications, we encounter either the presentation of new objects that cannot be modeled with a spatial prior or regional intensity changes of existing structures not explained by the model. Our driving application is the segmentation of brain tissue and tumors from three-dimensional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Our goal is a high-quality segmentation of healthy tissue and a precise delineation of tumor boundaries. We present an extension to an existing expectation maximization (EM) segmentation algorithm that modifies a probabilistic brain atlas with an individual subject’s information about tumor location obtained from subtraction of post- and pre-contrast MRI. The new method handles various types of pathology, space-occupying mass tumors and infiltrating changes like edema. Preliminary results on five cases presenting tumor types with very different characteristics demonstrate the potential of the new technique for clinical routine use for planning and monitoring in neurosurgery, radiation oncology, and radiology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMedical Image Computing and Computer-Assisted Intervention - MICCAI 2002 - 5th International Conference, Proceedings
EditorsTakeyoshi Dohi, Ron Kikinis
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9783540457862
StatePublished - 2002
Event5th International Conference on Medical Image Computing and Computer-Assisted Intervention, MICCAI 2002 - Tokyo, Japan
Duration: Sep 25 2002Sep 28 2002

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Other5th International Conference on Medical Image Computing and Computer-Assisted Intervention, MICCAI 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • General Computer Science


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