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In PloS one ; h5-index 176.0

Segmentation of retinal vessels is important for doctors to diagnose some diseases. The segmentation accuracy of retinal vessels can be effectively improved by using deep learning methods. However, most of the existing methods are incomplete for shallow feature extraction, and some superficial features are lost, resulting in blurred vessel boundaries and inaccurate segmentation of capillaries in the segmentation results. At the same time, the "layer-by-layer" information fusion between encoder and decoder makes the feature information extracted from the shallow layer of the network cannot be smoothly transferred to the deep layer of the network, resulting in noise in the segmentation features. In this paper, we propose the MFI-Net (Multi-resolution fusion input network) network model to alleviate the above problem to a certain extent. The multi-resolution input module in MFI-Net avoids the loss of coarse-grained feature information in the shallow layer by extracting local and global feature information in different resolutions. We have reconsidered the information fusion method between the encoder and the decoder, and used the information aggregation method to alleviate the information isolation between the shallow and deep layers of the network. MFI-Net is verified on three datasets, DRIVE, CHASE_DB1 and STARE. The experimental results show that our network is at a high level in several metrics, with F1 higher than U-Net by 2.42%, 2.46% and 1.61%, higher than R2U-Net by 1.47%, 2.22% and 0.08%, respectively. Finally, this paper proves the robustness of MFI-Net through experiments and discussions on the stability and generalization ability of MFI-Net.

Jiang Yun, Wu Chao, Wang Ge, Yao Hui-Xia, Liu Wen-Huan

2021