End-to-end deep learning nonrigid motion-corrected reconstruction for highly accelerated free-breathing coronary MRA

Haikun Qi*, Reza Hajhosseiny, Gastao Cruz, Thomas Kuestner, Karl Kunze, Radhouene Neji, René Botnar, Claudia Prieto

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To develop an end-to-end deep learning technique for nonrigid motion-corrected (MoCo) reconstruction of ninefold undersampled free-breathing whole-heart coronary MRA (CMRA). Methods: A novel deep learning framework was developed consisting of a diffeomorphic registration network and a motion-informed model-based deep learning (MoDL) reconstruction network. The registration network receives as input highly undersampled (~22×) respiratory-resolved images and outputs 3D nonrigid respiratory motion fields between the images. The motion-informed MoDL performs MoCo reconstruction from undersampled data using the predicted motion fields. The whole deep learning framework, termed as MoCo-MoDL, was trained end-to-end in a supervised manner for simultaneous 3D nonrigid motion estimation and MoCo reconstruction. MoCo-MoDL was compared with a state-of-the-art nonrigid MoCo CMRA reconstruction technique in 15 retrospectively undersampled datasets and 9 prospectively undersampled acquisitions. Results: The acquisition time for ninefold accelerated CMRA was ~2.5 min. The reconstruction time was ~22 s for the proposed MoCo-MoDL and ~35 min for the conventional approach. MoCo-MoDL achieved higher peak SNR (27.86 ± 3.00 vs. 26.71 ± 2.79; P <.05) and structural similarity (0.78 ± 0.06 vs. 0.75 ± 0.06; P <.05) than the conventional approach. Similar vessel length and visual image quality score were obtained with the 2 methods, whereas improved vessel sharpness was observed with MoCo-MoDL. Conclusion: An end-to-end deep learning approach was introduced for simultaneous nonrigid motion estimation and MoCo reconstruction of highly undersampled free-breathing whole-heart CMRA. The rapid free-breathing CMRA acquisition together with the fast reconstruction of the proposed approach promises easy integration into clinical workflow.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1983-1996
Number of pages14
JournalMagnetic Resonance in Medicine
Issue number4
Early online date6 Jun 2021
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


  • coronary MRA
  • deep learning nonrigid motion correction
  • deep learning reconstruction
  • free-breathing cardiac MRI


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