Iterative multi-atlas-based multi-image segmentation with tree-based registration

Hongjun Jia, Pew Thian Yap, Dinggang Shen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

101 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we present a multi-atlas-based framework for accurate, consistent and simultaneous segmentation of a group of target images. Multi-atlas-based segmentation algorithms consider concurrently complementary information from multiple atlases to produce optimal segmentation outcomes. However, the accuracy of these algorithms relies heavily on the precise alignment of the atlases with the target image. In particular, the commonly used pairwise registration may result in inaccurate alignment especially between images with large shape differences. Additionally, when segmenting a group of target images, most current methods consider these images independently with disregard of their correlation, thus resulting in inconsistent segmentations of the same structures across different target images. We propose two novel strategies to address these limitations: 1) a novel tree-based groupwise registration method for concurrent alignment of both the atlases and the target images, and 2) an iterative groupwise segmentation method for simultaneous consideration of segmentation information propagated from all available images, including the atlases and other newly segmented target images. Evaluation based on various datasets indicates that the proposed multi-atlas-based multi-image segmentation (MABMIS) framework yields substantial improvements in terms of consistency and accuracy over methods that do not consider the group of target images holistically.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)422-430
Number of pages9
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Jan 2
Externally publishedYes


  • Groupwise registration
  • Groupwise segmentation
  • Intermediate template
  • Multiple atlases

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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