Deep learning has attracted growing interest for application to medical imaging, such as positron emission tomography (PET), due to its excellent performance. Convolutional neural networks (CNNs), a facet of deep learning requires large training-image datasets. This presents a challenge in a clinical setting because it is difficult to prepare large, high-quality patient-related datasets. Recently, the deep image prior (DIP) approach has been devised, based on the fact that CNN structures have the intrinsic ability to solve inverse problems such as denoising without pre-training and do not require the preparation of training datasets. Herein, we proposed the dynamic PET image denoising using a DIP approach, with the PET data itself being used to reduce the statistical image noise. Static PET data were acquired for input to the network, with the dynamic PET images being handled as training labels, while the denoised dynamic PET images were represented by the network output. We applied the proposed DIP method to computer simulations and also to real data acquired from a living monkey brain with 18F-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose (18F-FDG). As a simulation result, our DIP method produced less noisy and more accurate dynamic images than the other algorithms. Moreover, using real data, the DIP method was found to perform better than other types of post-denoising method in terms of contrast-to-noise ratio, and also maintain the contrast-to-noise ratio when resampling the list data to 1/5 and 1/10 of the original size, demonstrating that the DIP method could be applied to low-dose PET imaging. These results indicated that the proposed DIP method provides a promising means of post-denoising for dynamic PET images.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Computer Science(all)
- Materials Science(all)