AI for PET image reconstruction

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Image reconstruction for positron emission tomography (PET) has been developed over many decades, with advances coming from improved modelling of the data statistics and improved modelling of the imaging physics. However, high noise and limited spatial resolution have remained issues in PET imaging, and state-of-the-art PET reconstruction has started to exploit other medical imaging modalities (such as MRI) to assist in noise reduction and enhancement of PET’s spatial resolution. Nonetheless, there is an ongoing drive towards not only improving image quality, but also reducing the injected radiation dose and reducing scanning times. While the arrival of new PET scanners (such as total body PET) is helping, there is always a need to improve reconstructed image quality due to the time and count limited imaging conditions. Artificial intelligence (AI) methods are now at the frontier of research for PET image reconstruction. While AI can learn the imaging physics as well as the noise in the data (when given sufficient examples), one of the most common uses of AI arises from exploiting databases of high-quality reference examples, to provide advanced noise compensation and resolution recovery. There are three main AI reconstruction approaches: (i) direct data-driven AI methods which rely on supervised learning from reference data, (ii) iterative (unrolled) methods which combine our physics and statistical models with AI learning from data, and (iii) methods which exploit AI with our known models, but crucially can offer benefits even in the absence of any example training data whatsoever. This article reviews these methods, considering opportunities and challenges of AI for PET reconstruction.
Original languageEnglish
Article number20230292
Number of pages17
JournalBritish Journal of Radiology
Issue number1150
Early online date4 Sept 2023
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sept 2023


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