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Determining regional brain growth in premature and mature infants in relation to age at MRI using deep neural networks


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Beizaee, Farzad, Bona, Michele, Desrosiers, Christian, Dolz, Jose and Lodygensky, Gregory. 2023. « Determining regional brain growth in premature and mature infants in relation to age at MRI using deep neural networks ». Scientific Reports, vol. 13, nº 1.

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Neonatal MRIs are used increasingly in preterm infants. However, it is not always feasible to analyze this data. Having a tool that assesses brain maturation during this period of extraordinary changes would be immensely helpful. Approaches based on deep learning approaches could solve this task since, once properly trained and validated, they can be used in practically any system and provide holistic quantitative information in a matter of minutes. However, one major deterrent for radiologists is that these tools are not easily interpretable. Indeed, it is important that structures driving the results be detailed and survive comparison to the available literature. To solve these challenges, we propose an interpretable pipeline based on deep learning to predict postmenstrual age at scan, a key measure for assessing neonatal brain development. For this purpose, we train a state-of-the-art deep neural network to segment the brain into 87 different regions using normal preterm and term infants from the dHCP study. We then extract informative features for brain age estimation using the segmented MRIs and predict the brain age at scan with a regression model. The proposed framework achieves a mean absolute error of 0.46 weeks to predict postmenstrual age at scan. While our model is based solely on structural T2-weighted images, the results are superior to recent, arguably more complex approaches. Furthermore, based on the extracted knowledge from the trained models, we found that frontal and parietal lobes are among the most important structures for neonatal brain age estimation.

Item Type: Peer reviewed article published in a journal
Desrosiers, Christian
Dolz, José
Affiliation: Génie logiciel et des technologies de l'information, Génie logiciel et des technologies de l'information
Date Deposited: 13 Sep 2023 17:45
Last Modified: 16 Oct 2023 19:25

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