21 March 2016 Cellular image segmentation using n-agent cooperative game theory
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Abstract
Image segmentation is an important problem in computer vision and has significant applications in the segmentation of cellular images. Many different imaging techniques exist and produce a variety of image properties which pose difficulties to image segmentation routines. Bright-field images are particularly challenging because of the non-uniform shape of the cells, the low contrast between cells and background, and imaging artifacts such as halos and broken edges. Classical segmentation techniques often produce poor results on these challenging images. Previous attempts at bright-field imaging are often limited in scope to the images that they segment. In this paper, we introduce a new algorithm for automatically segmenting cellular images. The algorithm incorporates two game theoretic models which allow each pixel to act as an independent agent with the goal of selecting their best labelling strategy. In the non-cooperative model, the pixels choose strategies greedily based only on local information. In the cooperative model, the pixels can form coalitions, which select labelling strategies that benefit the entire group. Combining these two models produces a method which allows the pixels to balance both local and global information when selecting their label. With the addition of k-means and active contour techniques for initialization and post-processing purposes, we achieve a robust segmentation routine. The algorithm is applied to several cell image datasets including bright-field images, fluorescent images and simulated images. Experiments show that the algorithm produces good segmentation results across the variety of datasets which differ in cell density, cell shape, contrast, and noise levels.
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Ian B. Dimock, Ian B. Dimock, Justin W. L. Wan, Justin W. L. Wan, "Cellular image segmentation using n-agent cooperative game theory", Proc. SPIE 9784, Medical Imaging 2016: Image Processing, 97842T (21 March 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2216571; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2216571
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