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IEEE Trans Med Imaging. 2017 Dec;36(12):2546-2556. doi: 10.1109/TMI.2017.2749212. Epub 2017 Sep 4.

Low-Dose Dynamic Cerebral Perfusion Computed Tomography Reconstruction via Kronecker-Basis-Representation Tensor Sparsity Regularization.


Dynamic cerebral perfusion computed tomography (DCPCT) has the ability to evaluate the hemodynamic information throughout the brain. However, due to multiple 3-D image volume acquisitions protocol, DCPCT scanning imposes high radiation dose on the patients with growing concerns. To address this issue, in this paper, based on the robust principal component analysis (RPCA, or equivalently the low-rank and sparsity decomposition) model and the DCPCT imaging procedure, we propose a new DCPCT image reconstruction algorithm to improve low-dose DCPCT and perfusion maps quality via using a powerful measure, called Kronecker-basis-representation tensor sparsity regularization, for measuring low-rankness extent of a tensor. For simplicity, the first proposed model is termed tensor-based RPCA (T-RPCA). Specifically, the T-RPCA model views the DCPCT sequential images as a mixture of low-rank, sparse, and noise components to describe the maximum temporal coherence of spatial structure among phases in a tensor framework intrinsically. Moreover, the low-rank component corresponds to the "background" part with spatial-temporal correlations, e.g., static anatomical contribution, which is stationary over time about structure, and the sparse component represents the time-varying component with spatial-temporal continuity, e.g., dynamic perfusion enhanced information, which is approximately sparse over time. Furthermore, an improved nonlocal patch-based T-RPCA (NL-T-RPCA) model which describes the 3-D block groups of the "background" in a tensor is also proposed. The NL-T-RPCA model utilizes the intrinsic characteristics underlying the DCPCT images, i.e., nonlocal self-similarity and global correlation. Two efficient algorithms using alternating direction method of multipliers are developed to solve the proposed T-RPCA and NL-T-RPCA models, respectively. Extensive experiments with a digital brain perfusion phantom, preclinical monkey data, and clinical patient data clearly demonstrate that the two proposed models can achieve more gains than the existing popular algorithms in terms of both quantitative and visual quality evaluations from low-dose acquisitions, especially as low as 20 mAs.

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