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Radiology Radiology

Radiology indispensable for tracking COVID-19.

In Diagnostic and interventional imaging

With the rapid spread of COVID-19 worldwide, early detection and efficient isolation of suspected patients are especially important to prevent the transmission. Although nucleic acid testing of SARS-CoV-2 is still the gold standard for diagnosis, there are well-recognized early-detection problems including time-consuming in the diagnosis process, noticeable false-negative rate in the early stage and lacking nucleic acid testing kits in some areas. Therefore, effective and rational applications of imaging technologies are critical in aiding the screen and helping the diagnosis of suspected patients. Currently, chest computed tomography is recommended as the first-line imaging test for detecting COVID-19 pneumonia, which could allow not only early detection of the typical chest manifestations, but also timely estimation of the disease severity and therapeutic effects. In addition, other radiological methods including chest X-ray, magnetic resonance imaging, and positron emission computed tomography also show significant advantages in the detection of COVID-19 pneumonia. This review summarizes the applications of radiology and nuclear medicine in detecting and diagnosing COVID-19. It highlights the importance for these technologies to curb the rapid transmission during the pandemic, considering findings from special groups such as children and pregnant women.

Li Jingwen, Long Xi, Wang Xinyi, Fang Fang, Lv Xuefei, Zhang Dandan, Sun Yu, Hu Shaoping, Lin Zhicheng, Xiong Nian


Artificial intelligence, COVID-19, Magnetic resonance imaging, Positron emission tomography computed tomography., Tomography, X-ray computed

General General

Discovering key topics from short, real-world medical inquiries via natural language processing and unsupervised learning

ArXiv Preprint

Millions of unsolicited medical inquiries are received by pharmaceutical companies every year. It has been hypothesized that these inquiries represent a treasure trove of information, potentially giving insight into matters regarding medicinal products and the associated medical treatments. However, due to the large volume and specialized nature of the inquiries, it is difficult to perform timely, recurrent, and comprehensive analyses. Here, we propose a machine learning approach based on natural language processing and unsupervised learning to automatically discover key topics in real-world medical inquiries from customers. This approach does not require ontologies nor annotations. The discovered topics are meaningful and medically relevant, as judged by medical information specialists, thus demonstrating that unsolicited medical inquiries are a source of valuable customer insights. Our work paves the way for the machine-learning-driven analysis of medical inquiries in the pharmaceutical industry, which ultimately aims at improving patient care.

Angelo Ziletti, Christoph Berns, Oliver Treichel, Thomas Weber, Jennifer Liang, Stephanie Kammerath, Marion Schwaerzler, Jagatheswari Virayah, David Ruau, Xin Ma, Andreas Mattern


General General

Predictors of Mortality in Traumatic Intracranial Hemorrhage: A National Trauma Data Bank Study.

In Frontiers in neurology

Background/Objective: Traumatic intracranial hemorrhage (tICH) accounts for significant trauma morbidity and mortality. Several studies have developed prognostic models for tICH outcomes, but previous models face limitations, including poor generalizability and limited accuracy. The objective was to develop a prognostic model and determine predictors of mortality using the largest trauma database in the U.S., applying rigorous analytical methodology with true hold-out-set model validation. Methods: We identified 248,536 patients in the National Trauma Data Bank (NTDB) from 2012 to 2016 with a diagnosis code associated with tICH. For each admission, we collected demographic information, systolic blood pressure, blood alcohol level (BAL), Glasgow Coma Score (GCS), Injury Severity Score (ISS), presence of epidural/subdural/subarachnoid/intraparenchymal hemorrhage, comorbidities, complications, trauma center level, and trauma center region. Our final study population was 212,666 patients following exclusion of records with missing data. The dependent variable was patient death. Linear support vector machine (SVM) classification was carried out with recursive feature selection. Model performance was assessed using holdout 10-fold cross-validation. Results: Cross-validation demonstrated a mean accuracy of 0.792 (95% CI 0.783-0.799). Accuracy, precision, recall, and AUC were 0.827, 0.309, 0.750, and 0.791, respectively. In the final model, high ISS, advanced age, subdural hemorrhage, and subarachnoid hemorrhage were associated with increased mortality, while high GCS verbal and motor subscores, current smoker, BAL beyond the legal limit, and level 1 trauma center were associated with decreased mortality. Conclusions: A linear SVM model was developed for tICH, with nine features selected as predictors of mortality. These findings are applicable to multiple hemorrhage subtypes and may benefit the triage of high risk patients upon admission. While many studies have attempted to create models to predict mortality in TBI, we sought to confirm those predictors using modern modeling approaches, machine learning, and true hold-out test sets, using the largest available TBI database in the U.S. We find that while the predictors we identify are consistent with prior reports, overall prediction accuracy is somewhat lower than prior reports when assessed more rigorously.

Wu Esther, Marthi Siddharth, Asaad Wael F


mortality predictors, national trauma data bank, support vector machine, traumatic brain injury, traumatic intracranial hemorrhage

General General

Toward Learning Machines at a Mother and Baby Unit.

In Frontiers in psychology ; h5-index 92.0

Agnostic analyses of unique video material from a Mother and Baby Unit were carried out to investigate the usefulness of such analyses to the unit. The goal was to improve outcomes: the health of mothers and their babies. The method was to implement a learning machine that becomes more useful over time and over task. A feasible set-up is here described, with the purpose of producing intelligible and useful results to healthcare professionals at the unit by means of a vision processing pipeline, grouped together with multi-modal capabilities of handling annotations and audio. Algorithmic bias turned out to be an obstacle that could only partly be handled by modern pipelines for automated feature analysis. The professional use of complex quantitative scoring for various mental health-related assessments further complicated the automation of laborious tasks. Activities during the MBU stay had previously been shown to decrease psychiatric symptoms across diagnostic groups. The implementation and first set of experiments on a learning machine for the unit produced the first steps toward explaining why this is so, in turn enabling decision support to staff about what to do more and what to do less of.

Boman Magnus, Downs Johnny, Karali Abubakrelsedik, Pawlby Susan


learning machine, machine learning, maternal unresponsiveness, mental health, mind-mindedness, multi-modal learning

General General

Extending the Functional Subnetwork Approach to a Generalized Linear Integrate-and-Fire Neuron Model.

In Frontiers in neurorobotics

Engineering neural networks to perform specific tasks often represents a monumental challenge in determining network architecture and parameter values. In this work, we extend our previously-developed method for tuning networks of non-spiking neurons, the "Functional subnetwork approach" (FSA), to the tuning of networks composed of spiking neurons. This extension enables the direct assembly and tuning of networks of spiking neurons and synapses based on the network's intended function, without the use of global optimization or machine learning. To extend the FSA, we show that the dynamics of a generalized linear integrate and fire (GLIF) neuron model have fundamental similarities to those of a non-spiking leaky integrator neuron model. We derive analytical expressions that show functional parallels between: (1) A spiking neuron's steady-state spiking frequency and a non-spiking neuron's steady-state voltage in response to an applied current; (2) a spiking neuron's transient spiking frequency and a non-spiking neuron's transient voltage in response to an applied current; and (3) a spiking synapse's average conductance during steady spiking and a non-spiking synapse's conductance. The models become more similar as additional spiking neurons are added to each population "node" in the network. We apply the FSA to model a neuromuscular reflex pathway two different ways: Via non-spiking components and then via spiking components. These results provide a concrete example of how a single non-spiking neuron may model the average spiking frequency of a population of spiking neurons. The resulting model also demonstrates that by using the FSA, models can be constructed that incorporate both spiking and non-spiking units. This work facilitates the construction of large networks of spiking neurons and synapses that perform specific functions, for example, those implemented with neuromorphic computing hardware, by providing an analytical method for directly tuning their parameters without time-consuming optimization or learning.

Szczecinski Nicholas S, Quinn Roger D, Hunt Alexander J


functional subnetwork approach, generalized integrate and fire models, neurorobotics, non-spiking neuron, spiking neuron, synthetic nervous system

General General

GLSNN: A Multi-Layer Spiking Neural Network Based on Global Feedback Alignment and Local STDP Plasticity.

In Frontiers in computational neuroscience

Spiking Neural Networks (SNNs) are considered as the third generation of artificial neural networks, which are more closely with information processing in biological brains. However, it is still a challenge for how to train the non-differential SNN efficiently and robustly with the form of spikes. Here we give an alternative method to train SNNs by biologically-plausible structural and functional inspirations from the brain. Firstly, inspired by the significant top-down structural connections, a global random feedback alignment is designed to help the SNN propagate the error target from the output layer directly to the previous few layers. Then inspired by the local plasticity of the biological system in which the synapses are more tuned by the neighborhood neurons, a differential STDP is used to optimize local plasticity. Extensive experimental results on the benchmark MNIST (98.62%) and Fashion MNIST (89.05%) have shown that the proposed algorithm performs favorably against several state-of-the-art SNNs trained with backpropagation.

Zhao Dongcheng, Zeng Yi, Zhang Tielin, Shi Mengting, Zhao Feifei


SNN, brain, global feedback alignment, local STDP, plasticity