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Med Image Anal. 2012 Aug;16(6):1228-40. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2012 Jul 6.

A multiple-instance learning framework for diabetic retinopathy screening.

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Inserm, UMR 1101, SFR ScInBioS, Brest F-29200, France.


A novel multiple-instance learning framework, for automated image classification, is presented in this paper. Given reference images marked by clinicians as relevant or irrelevant, the image classifier is trained to detect patterns, of arbitrary size, that only appear in relevant images. After training, similar patterns are sought in new images in order to classify them as either relevant or irrelevant images. Therefore, no manual segmentations are required. As a consequence, large image datasets are available for training. The proposed framework was applied to diabetic retinopathy screening in 2-D retinal image datasets: Messidor (1200 images) and e-ophtha, a dataset of 25,702 examination records from the Ophdiat screening network (107,799 images). In this application, an image (or an examination record) is relevant if the patient should be referred to an ophthalmologist. Trained on one half of Messidor, the classifier achieved high performance on the other half of Messidor (A(z)=0.881) and on e-ophtha (A(z)=0.761). We observed, in a subset of 273 manually segmented images from e-ophtha, that all eight types of diabetic retinopathy lesions are detected.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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