Mid-Space-Independent Symmetric Data Term for Pairwise Deformable Image Registration
Aligning a pair of images in a mid-space is a common approach to ensuring that deformable image registration is symmetric – that it does not depend on the arbitrary ordering of the input images. The results are, however, generally dependent on the choice of the mid-space. In particular, the set of possible solutions is typically affected by the constraints that are enforced on the two transformations (that deform the two images), which are to prevent the mid-space from drifting too far from the native image spaces. The use of an implicit atlas has been proposed to define the mid-space for registration. In this work, by aligning the atlas to each image in the native image space, we make implicit-atlas-based pairwise registration independent of the mid-space, thereby eliminating the need for anti-drift constraints. We derive a new symmetric data term that only depends on a single transformation morphing one image to the other, and validate it through diffeomorphic registration experiments on brain MR images.
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