Automatic Junction Detection for Tubular Structures

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Junctions of tubular structures (vasculature, trachea, neuron, etc) in medical images are critical for the topology of these structures. Identification of them is helpful in many applications. For example, quantification of geometric vascular features, registration of trachea movement due to respiration, tracing of neuron path. However, manual extraction of junctions can be tedious, time-consuming, and subject to operator bias. In this paper, we propose a novel method to detect them automatically and describe how to implement it in ITK framework. The input is a 2D/3D binary image that can be obtained from any segmentation techniques. The output will be positions of junctions and their sizes. There are only two parameters which need to be set by the user. We provide here the implementation as a ITK class: itk::JunctionDetectionFilter.
Please cite the following paper if you are interested in our work.
G. Xiong, C. Chen, J. Chen, Y. Xie, and L. Xing, Tracking the Motion Trajectories of Junction Structures in 4D CT Images of the Lung, Vol. 57, No. 15, pp. 4905-4930, Physics in Medicine and Biology, 2012.
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plus Useful automatic tool which could be used for morphometric analysis of vasculature. by Oleksandr Dzyubak on 2009-03-26 20:04:20 for revision #1
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plus Very Useful Contribution to Shape Analysis by Luis Ibanez on 2009-03-26 15:19:35 for revision #1
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Comment by Miroslav Radojevic yellow
This plugin is not possible to compile in itk 4+. There was a major change in itk::Statistics section and it causes compiling error. itk3 is not possible to compile on new OS (and why would we go back anyway). Please either update it or simply remove from website since it makes a confusion (some publications point to it but what I've seen is that it is not updated). There was another message where the compilation issue was raised but no one answered:

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Categories: Feature extraction, Filtering, Image
Keywords: junction detection, bifurcation detection, tubular structures, vessel, trachea, neuron
Toolkits: ITK, CMake, VTK
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