Tumor Detection in Brain MRIs by Computing Dissimilarities in the Latent Space of a Variational AutoEncoder

  • Alexandra Albu Romanian Institute of Science an Technology
  • Alina Enescu Romanian Institute of Science an Technology and Universitatea Babeș-Bolyai
  • Luigi Malagò Romanian Institute of Science an Technology
Keywords: variational autoencoders, anomaly detection, brain MRI


The ability to automatically detect anomalies in brain MRI scans is of great importance in computer-aided diagnosis. Unsupervised anomaly detection methods work primarily by learning the distribution of healthy images and identifying abnormal tissues as outliers. We propose a slice-wise detection method which first trains a pair of autoencoders on two different datasets, one with healthy individuals and the other one with images of normal and tumoral tissues. Next, it classifies slices based on the distance in the latent space between the enconding of the image and the encoding of the reconstructed image, obtained through the autoencoder trained on healthy images only. We validate our approach with a series of preliminary experiments on the HCP and BRATS-15 datasets.


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