BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Limited evidence has suggested that a deep learning automatic brain segmentation and classification method, based on T1-weighted brain MR images, can predict Alzheimer disease. Our aim was to develop and validate a deep learning-based automatic brain segmentation and classification algorithm for the diagnosis of Alzheimer disease using 3D T1-weighted brain MR images. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A deep learning-based algorithm was developed using a dataset of T1-weighted brain MR images in consecutive patients with Alzheimer disease and mild cognitive impairment. We developed a 2-step algorithm using a convolutional neural network to perform brain parcellation followed by 3 classifier techniques including XGBoost for disease prediction. All classification experiments were performed using 5-fold cross-validation. The diagnostic performance of the XGBoost method was compared with logistic regression and a linear Support Vector Machine by calculating their areas under the curve for differentiating Alzheimer disease from mild cognitive impairment and mild cognitive impairment from healthy controls. RESULTS: In a total of 4 datasets, 1099, 212, 711, and 705 eligible patients were included. Compared with the linear Support Vector Machine and logistic regression, XGBoost significantly improved the prediction of Alzheimer disease (P,.001). In terms of differentiating Alzheimer disease from mild cognitive impairment, the 3 algorithms resulted in areas under the curve of 0.758-0.825. XGBoost had a sensitivity of 68% and a specificity of 70%. In terms of differentiating mild cognitive impairment from the healthy control group, the 3 algorithms resulted in areas under the curve of 0.668-0.870. XGBoost had a sensitivity of 79% and a specificity of 80%. CONCLUSIONS: The deep learning-based automatic brain segmentation and classification algorithm allowed an accurate diagnosis of Alzheimer disease using T1-weighted brain MR images. The widespread availability of T1-weighted brain MR imaging suggests that this algorithm is a promising and widely applicable method for predicting Alzheimer disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Clinical Neurology