Microvasculature Segmentation using Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT)

Betreuer/in:            Maximilian Neidhardt           
Dekanat/Institut:   Institut für Intelligente und Medizintechnische Systeme           

E-Mail:   Maximilian.Neidhardt@tuhh.de

Background: Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a well-established clinical technique deployed amongst other things in intravascular imaging. OCT-imaging offers a high temporal and spatial resolution which allows us to acquire up to 833 image volumes (ca. 2.1 x 2.1 x 3mm) per second with our system. This temporal sequence of volumes contains information on the size and location of micro-vessels as well as the velocity of microvasculature blood flow. This can be useful in analyzing e.g. the tumor response to anti-cancer drugs.

Tasks: Experimental phantom setup for data acquisition and data processing. The individual tasks include:

  1. Literature Research on OCT imaging of microvascular structures.
  2. Setting up the experimental environment:
    1. Design of a 3D printed phantom to simulate microvascular blood flow
    2. Experimental setup for high-speed OCT volume acquisition of the proposed phantom. A robot can be employed for scanning of the phantom to increase the volume size.
  3. Stitching of OCT volumes and segmentation of micro-vessels. Comparison of different data processing algorithms such as speckle variance [1] for vessel segmentation and flow estimation.
  4. Test your algorithms on volume data acquired from previously performed experiments with a xenograft mouse model.

Several parts of the experimental setup have been already successfully established and merely need to be further adapted. This topic can be scaled to a MSc, BSc or project thesis.

[1] Xuan Liu, Kang Zhang, Yong Huang, and Jin U. Kang, “Spectroscopic-speckle variance OCT for microvasculature detection and analysis,” Biomed. Opt. Express 2, 2995-3009 (2011)

Requirements: Good programming skills, interest in hardware setup and experimental work, ability to work independently

Contact: Maximilian Neidhardt (maximilian.neidhardt@tuhh.de)

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