Data-Driven Multi-contrast Spectral Microstructure Imaging with InSpect

Paddy J. Slator*, Jana Hutter, Razvan V. Marinescu, Marco Palombo, Laurence H. Jackson, Alison Ho, Lucy C. Chappell, Mary Rutherford, Joseph V. Hajnal, Daniel C. Alexander

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference paperpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


We introduce and demonstrate an unsupervised machine learning method for spectroscopic analysis of quantitative MRI (qMRI) experiments. qMRI data can support estimation of multidimensional correlation (or single-dimensional) spectra, which allow model-free investigation of tissue properties, but this requires an ill-posed calculation. Moreover, in the vast majority of applications ground truth knowledge is unobtainable, preventing the application of supervised machine learning. Here we present a new method that addresses these limitations in a data-driven way. The algorithm simultaneously estimates a canonical basis of spectral components and voxelwise maps of their weightings, thereby pooling information across whole images to regularise the ill-posed problem. We show that our algorithm substantially outperforms current voxelwise spectral approaches. We demonstrate the method on combined diffusion-relaxometry placental MRI scans, revealing anatomically-relevant substructures, and identifying dysfunctional placentas. Our algorithm vastly reduces the data required to reliably estimate multidimensional correlation (or single-dimensional) spectra, opening up the possibility of spectroscopic imaging in a wide range of new applications.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMedical Image Computing and Computer Assisted Intervention – MICCAI 2020 - 23rd International Conference, Proceedings
EditorsAnne L. Martel, Purang Abolmaesumi, Danail Stoyanov, Diana Mateus, Maria A. Zuluaga, S. Kevin Zhou, Daniel Racoceanu, Leo Joskowicz
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9783030597245
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Event23rd International Conference on Medical Image Computing and Computer-Assisted Intervention, MICCAI 2020 - Lima, Peru
Duration: 4 Oct 20208 Oct 2020

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume12266 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference23rd International Conference on Medical Image Computing and Computer-Assisted Intervention, MICCAI 2020


  • Placenta MRI
  • Quantitative MRI
  • Unsupervised learning


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