TopoAngler: Interactive Topology-Based Extraction of Fishes

Alexander Bock, Harish Doraiswamy, Adam Summers, Cláudio Silva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We present TopoAngler, a visualization framework that enables an interactive user-guided segmentation of fishes contained in a micro-CT scan. The inherent noise in the CT scan coupled with the often disconnected (and sometimes broken) skeletal structure of fishes makes an automatic segmentation of the volume impractical. To overcome this, our framework combines techniques from computational topology with an interactive visual interface, enabling the human-in-the-Ioop to effectively extract fishes from the volume. In the first step, the join tree of the input is used to create a hierarchical segmentation of the volume. Through the use of linked views, the visual interface then allows users to interactively explore this hierarchy, and gather parts of individual fishes into a coherent sub-volume, thus reconstructing entire fishes. Our framework was primarily developed for its application to CT scans of fishes, generated as part of the ScanAllFish project, through close collaboration with their lead scientist. However, we expect it to also be applicable in other biological applications where a single dataset contains multiple specimen; a common routine that is now widely followed in laboratories to increase throughput of expensive CT scanners.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8017639
Pages (from-to)812-821
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2017


  • Computational topology
  • branch decomposition
  • hierarchical segmentation
  • interaction
  • join trees
  • visualization system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Signal Processing
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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