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In Journal of digital imaging

18F-Fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) is commonly used in clinical practice and clinical drug development to identify and quantify metabolically active tumors. Manual or computer-assisted tumor segmentation in FDG-PET images is a common way to assess tumor burden, such approaches are both labor intensive and may suffer from high inter-reader variability. We propose an end-to-end method leveraging 2D and 3D convolutional neural networks to rapidly identify and segment tumors and to extract metabolic information in eyes to thighs (whole body) FDG-PET/CT scans. The developed architecture is computationally efficient and devised to accommodate the size of whole-body scans, the extreme imbalance between tumor burden and the volume of healthy tissue, and the heterogeneous nature of the input images. Our dataset consists of a total of 3664 eyes to thighs FDG-PET/CT scans, from multi-site clinical trials in patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) and advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Tumors were segmented and reviewed by board-certified radiologists. We report a mean 3D Dice score of 88.6% on an NHL hold-out set of 1124 scans and a 93% sensitivity on 274 NSCLC hold-out scans. The method is a potential tool for radiologists to rapidly assess eyes to thighs FDG-avid tumor burden.

Jemaa Skander, Fredrickson Jill, Carano Richard A D, Nielsen Tina, de Crespigny Alex, Bengtsson Thomas


DLBCL, Deep learning, FDG-PET, Lymphoma, NHL, Tumor segmentation