A coarse-to-fine framework for unsupervised multi-contrast MR image deformable registration with dual consistency constraint

08/05/2020 ∙ by Weijian Huang, et al. ∙ 4

Multi-contrast magnetic resonance (MR) image registration is essential in the clinic to achieve fast and accurate imaging-based disease diagnosis and treatment planning. Nevertheless, the efficiency and performance of the existing registration algorithms can still be improved. In this paper, we propose a novel unsupervised learning-based framework to achieve accurate and efficient multi-contrast MR image registrations. Specifically, an end-to-end coarse-to-fine network architecture consisting of affine and deformable transformations is designed to get rid of both the multi-step iteration process and the complex image preprocessing operations. Furthermore, a dual consistency constraint and a new prior knowledge-based loss function are developed to enhance the registration performances. The proposed method has been evaluated on a clinical dataset that consists of 555 cases, with encouraging performances achieved. Compared to the commonly utilized registration methods, including Voxelmorph, SyN, and LDDMM, the proposed method achieves the best registration performance with a Dice score of 0.826 in identifying stroke lesions. More robust performance in low-signal areas is also observed. With regards to the registration speed, our method is about 17 times faster than the most competitive method of SyN when testing on a same CPU.

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