On the averaging of cardiac diffusion tensor MRI data: the effect of distance function selection

Giannakidis, A. ORCID: 0000-0001-7403-923X, Melkus, G., Yang, G. and Gullberg, G.T., 2016. On the averaging of cardiac diffusion tensor MRI data: the effect of distance function selection. Physics in Medicine and Biology, 61 (21), pp. 7765-7786. ISSN 0031-9155

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Diffusion tensor magnetic resonance imaging (DT-MRI) allows a unique insight into the microstructure of highly-directional tissues. The selection of the most proper distance function for the space of diffusion tensors is crucial in enhancing the clinical application of this imaging modality. Both linear and nonlinear metrics have been proposed in the literature over the years. The debate on the most appropriate DT-MRI distance function is still ongoing. In this paper, we presented a framework to compare the Euclidean, affine-invariant Riemannian and log-Euclidean metrics using actual high-resolution DT-MRI rat heart data. We employed temporal averaging at the diffusion tensor level of three consecutive and identically-acquired DT-MRI datasets from each of five rat hearts as a means to rectify the background noise-induced loss of myocyte directional regularity. This procedure is applied here for the first time in the context of tensor distance function selection. When compared with previous studies that used a different concrete application to juxtapose the various DT-MRI distance functions, this work is unique in that it combined the following: (i) Metrics were judged by quantitative - rather than qualitative – criteria, (ii) the comparison tools were non-biased, (iii) a longitudinal comparison operation was used on a same-voxel basis. The statistical analyses of the comparison showed that the three DT-MRI distance functions tend to provide equivalent results. Hence, we came to the conclusion that the tensor manifold for cardiac DT-MRI studies is a curved space of almost zero curvature. The signal to noise ratio dependence of the operations was investigated through simulations. Finally, the “swelling effect” occurrence following Euclidean averaging was found to be too unimportant to be worth consideration.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Physics in Medicine and Biology
Creators: Giannakidis, A., Melkus, G., Yang, G. and Gullberg, G.T.
Publisher: Institute of Physics Publishing
Date: 18 October 2016
Volume: 61
Number: 21
ISSN: 0031-9155
Divisions: Schools > School of Science and Technology
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 16 Mar 2018 11:55
Last Modified: 16 Mar 2018 11:55
URI: https://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/33008

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