Multi-layer cube sampling for liver boundary detection in PET–CT images

  • Xinxin Liu
  • Jian YangEmail author
  • Shuang Song
  • Hong Song
  • Danni AiEmail author
  • Jianjun Zhu
  • Yurong Jiang
  • Yongtian Wang
Scientific Paper


Liver metabolic information is considered as a crucial diagnostic marker for the diagnosis of fever of unknown origin, and liver recognition is the basis of automatic diagnosis of metabolic information extraction. However, the poor quality of PET and CT images is a challenge for information extraction and target recognition in PET–CT images. The existing detection method cannot meet the requirement of liver recognition in PET–CT images, which is the key problem in the big data analysis of PET–CT images. A novel texture feature descriptor called multi-layer cube sampling (MLCS) is developed for liver boundary detection in low-dose CT and PET images. The cube sampling feature is proposed for extracting more texture information, which uses a bi-centric voxel strategy. Neighbour voxels are divided into three regions by the centre voxel and the reference voxel in the histogram, and the voxel distribution information is statistically classified as texture feature. Multi-layer texture features are also used to improve the ability and adaptability of target recognition in volume data. The proposed feature is tested on the PET and CT images for liver boundary detection. For the liver in the volume data, mean detection rate (DR) and mean error rate (ER) reached 95.15 and 7.81% in low-quality PET images, and 83.10 and 21.08% in low-contrast CT images. The experimental results demonstrated that the proposed method is effective and robust for liver boundary detection.


Boundary detection Multi-layer PET–CT Feature extraction Classification 



We are very grateful to Dr. Li Huo from the Peking Union Medical College Hospital for providing the datasets used in this paper.


This work was supported by the National Key R&D Program of China (2017YFC0112000), and the National Science Foundation Program of China (61672099, 81627803, 61501030, 61527827).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Australasian College of Physical Scientists and Engineers in Medicine 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xinxin Liu
    • 1
  • Jian Yang
    • 1
    Email author
  • Shuang Song
    • 1
  • Hong Song
    • 2
  • Danni Ai
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jianjun Zhu
    • 1
  • Yurong Jiang
    • 1
  • Yongtian Wang
    • 1
  1. 1.Beijing Engineering Research Center of Mixed Reality and Advanced Display, School of Optics and ElectronicsBeijing Institute of TechnologyBeijingChina
  2. 2.School of SoftwareBeijing Institute of TechnologyBeijingChina

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