Point-Spread-Function-Aware Slice-to-Volume Registration: Application to Upper Abdominal MRI Super-Resolution
MR image acquisition of moving organs remains challenging despite the advances in ultra-fast 2D MRI sequences. Post-acquisition techniques have been proposed to increase spatial resolution a posteriori by combining acquired orthogonal stacks into a single, high-resolution (HR) volume. Current super-resolution techniques classically rely on a two-step procedure. The volumetric reconstruction step leverages a physical slice acquisition model. However, the motion correction step typically neglects the point spread function (PSF) information. In this paper, we propose a PSF-aware slice-to-volume registration approach and, for the first time, demonstrate the potential benefit of Super-Resolution for upper abdominal imaging. Our novel reconstruction pipeline takes advantage of different MR acquisitions clinically used in routine MR cholangio-pancreatography studies to guide the registration. On evaluation of clinically relevant image information, our approach outperforms state-of-the-art reconstruction toolkits in terms of visual clarity and preservation of raw data information. Overall, we achieve promising results towards replacing currently required CT scans.
KeywordsSuper-resolution reconstruction Point spread function Registration Scattered data approximation MRCP study
This work is supported by the EPSRC-funded UCL Centre for Doctoral Training in Medical Imaging (EP/L016478/1), the Department of Healths NIHR-funded Biomedical Research Centre at University College London Hospitals and Innovative Engineering for Health award by the Wellcome Trust [WT101957] and Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) [NS/A000027/1]. Furthermore, this work was funded by NIHR Clinical Lectureship and NIHR Senior Investigator grant.
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