Automating tumor classification with pixel-by-pixel contrast-enhanced ultrasound perfusion kinetics

Casey N. Ta, Yuko Kono, Christopher V. Barback, Robert F. Mattrey, Andrew C. Kummel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) enables highly specific time-resolved imaging of vasculature by intravenous injection of ∼2 μm gas filled microbubbles. To develop a quantitative automated diagnosis of breast tumors with CEUS, breast tumors were induced in rats by administration of N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea. A bolus injection of microbubbles was administered and CEUS videos of each tumor were acquired for at least 3 min. The time-intensity curve of each pixel within a region of interest (ROI) was analyzed to measure kinetic parameters associated with the wash-in, peak enhancement, and wash-out phases of microbubble bolus injections since it was expected that the aberrant vascularity of malignant tumors will result in faster and more diverse perfusion kinetics versus those of benign lesions. Parameters were classified using linear discriminant analysis to differentiate between benign and malignant tumors and improve diagnostic accuracy. Preliminary results with a small dataset (10 tumors, 19 videos) show 100 accuracy with fivefold cross-validation testing using as few as two choice variables for training and validation. Several of the parameters which provided the best differentiation between malignant and benign tumors employed comparative analysis of all the pixels in the ROI including enhancement coverage, fractional enhancement coverage times, and the standard deviation of the envelope curve difference normalized to the mean of the peak frame. Analysis of combinations of five variables demonstrated that pixel-by-pixel analysis produced the most robust information for tumor diagnostics and achieved 5 times greater separation of benign and malignant cases than ROI-based analysis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number02C103
JournalJournal of Vacuum Science and Technology B:Nanotechnology and Microelectronics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Instrumentation
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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