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Multi-path x-D Recurrent Neural Networks for Collaborative Image Classification

Posted by on Wednesday, November 25, 2020 in Computed Tomography, Deep Learning, Longitudinal, Lung Screening CT.

Riqiang Gao, Yuankai Huo, Shunxing Bao, Yucheng Tang, Sanja L. Antic, Emily S. Epstein, Steve Deppen, Alexis B. Paulson, Kim L. Sandler, Pierre P. Massion, Bennett A. Landman,Multi-path x-D Recurrent Neural Networks for Collaborative Image Classification. Neurocomputing, 2020.

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With the rapid development of image acquisition and storage, multiple images per class are commonly available for computer vision tasks (e.g., face recognition, object detection, medical imaging, etc.). Recently, the recurrent neural network (RNN) has been widely integrated with convolutional neural networks (CNN) to perform image classification on ordered (sequential) data. In this paper, by permutating multiple images as multiple dummy orders, we generalize the ordered “RNN+CNN” design (longitudinal) to a novel unordered fashion, called Multi-path x-D Recurrent Neural Network (MxDRNN) for image classification. To the best of our knowledge, few (if any) existing studies have deployed the RNN framework to unordered intra-class images to leverage classification performance. Specifically, multiple learning paths are introduced in the MxDRNN to extract discriminative features by permutating input dummy orders. Eight datasets from five different fields (MNIST, 3D-MNIST, CIFAR, VGGFace2, and lung screening computed tomography) are included to evaluate the performance of our method. The proposed MxDRNN improves the baseline performance by a large margin across the different application fields (e.g., accuracy from 46.40% to 76.54% in VGGFace2 test pose set, AUC from 0.7418 to 0.8162 in NLST lung dataset). Additionally, empirical experiments show the MxDRNN is more robust to category-irrelevant attributes (e.g., expression, pose in face images), which may introduce difficulties for image classification and algorithm generalizability. The code is publicly available.