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Bayesian bacterial detection using irregularly sampled optical endomicroscopy images

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    Rights statement: This is an open access article under the CCBY license. (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-31
Number of pages14
JournalMedical image analysis
Early online date24 Jun 2019
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 24 Jun 2019


Pneumonia is a major cause of morbidity and mortality of patients in intensive care. Rapid determination of the presence and gram status of the pathogenic bacteria in the distal lung may enable a more tailored treatment regime. Optical Endomicroscopy (OEM) is an emerging medical imaging platform with preclinical and clinical utility. Pulmonary OEM via multi-core fibre bundles has the potential to provide in vivo, in situ, fluorescent molecular signatures of the causes of infection and inflammation. This paper presents a Bayesian approach for bacterial detection in OEM images. The model considered assumes that the observed pixel fluorescence is a linear combination of the actual intensity value associated with tissues or background, corrupted by additive Gaussian noise and potentially by an additional sparse outlier term modelling anomalies (bacteria). The bacteria detection problem is formulated in a Bayesian framework and prior distributions are assigned to the unknown model parameters. A Markov chain Monte Carlo algorithm based on a partially collapsed Gibbs sampler is used to sample the posterior distribution of the unknown parameters. The proposed algorithm is first validated by simulations conducted using synthetic datasets for which good performance is obtained. Analysis is then conducted using two ex vivo lung datasets in which fluorescently labelled bacteria are present in the distal lung. A good correlation between bacteria counts identified by a trained clinician and those of the proposed method, which detects most of the manually annotated regions, is observed.

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