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In Computers in biology and medicine

BACKGROUND : As of Feb 27, 2022, coronavirus (COVID-19) has caused 434,888,591 infections and 5,958,849 deaths worldwide, dealing a severe blow to the economies and cultures of most countries around the world. As the virus has mutated, its infectious capacity has further increased. Effective diagnosis of suspected cases is an important tool to stop the spread of the pandemic. Therefore, we intended to develop a computer-aided diagnosis system for the diagnosis of suspected cases.

METHODS : To address the shortcomings of commonly used pre-training methods and exploit the information in unlabeled images, we proposed a new pre-training method based on transfer learning with self-supervised learning (TS). After that, a new convolutional neural network based on attention mechanism and deep residual network (RANet) was proposed to extract features. Based on this, a hybrid ensemble model (TSRNet) was proposed for classifying lung CT images of suspected patients as COVID-19 and normal.

RESULTS : Compared with the existing five models in terms of accuracy (DarkCOVIDNet: 98.08%; Deep-COVID: 97.58%; NAGNN: 97.86%; COVID-ResNet: 97.78%; Patch-based CNN: 88.90%), TSRNet has the highest accuracy of 99.80%. In addition, the recall, f1-score, and AUC of the model reached 99.59%, 99.78%, and 1, respectively.

CONCLUSION : TSRNet can effectively diagnose suspected COVID-19 cases with the help of the information in unlabeled and labeled images, thus helping physicians to adopt early treatment plans for confirmed cases.

Sun Junding, Pi Pengpeng, Tang Chaosheng, Wang Shui-Hua, Zhang Yu-Dong

2022-Apr-16

Attention, COVID-19, CT, Deep learning, Ensemble, Machine learning, Self-supervised learning, Transfer learning