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16 March 2006 Breast tumor angiogenesis analysis using 3D power Doppler ultrasound
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Angiogenesis is the process that correlates to tumor growth, invasion, and metastasis. Breast cancer angiogenesis has been the most extensively studied and now serves as a paradigm for understanding the biology of angiogenesis and its effects on tumor outcome and patient prognosis. Most studies on characterization of angiogenesis focus on pixel/voxel counts more than morphological analysis. Nevertheless, in cancer, the blood flow is greatly affected by the morphological changes, such as the number of vessels, branching pattern, length, and diameter. This paper presents a computer-aided diagnostic (CAD) system that can quantify vascular morphology using 3-D power Doppler ultrasound (US) on breast tumors. We propose a scheme to extract the morphological information from angiography and to relate them to tumor diagnosis outcome. At first, a 3-D thinning algorithm helps narrow down the vessels into their skeletons. The measurements of vascular morphology significantly rely on the traversing of the vascular trees produced from skeletons. Our study of 3-D assessment of vascular morphological features regards vessel count, length, bifurcation, and diameter of vessels. Investigations into 221 solid breast tumors including 110 benign and 111 malignant cases, the p values using the Student's t-test for all features are less than 0.05 indicating that the proposed features are deemed statistically significant. Our scheme focuses on the vascular architecture without involving the technique of tumor segmentation. The results show that the proposed method is feasible, and have a good agreement with the diagnosis of the pathologists.
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Ruey-Feng Chang, Sheng-Fang Huang, Yu-Hau Lee, Dar-Ren Chen, and Woo Kyung Moon "Breast tumor angiogenesis analysis using 3D power Doppler ultrasound", Proc. SPIE 6147, Medical Imaging 2006: Ultrasonic Imaging and Signal Processing, 614705 (16 March 2006);

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