Spatially regularized compressed sensing for high angular resolution diffusion imaging

Michailovich O, Rathi Y, Dolui S

IEEE Trans Med Imaging 2011 May;30(5):1100-15

PMID: 21536524


Despite the relative recency of its inception, the theory of compressive sampling (aka compressed sensing) (CS) has already revolutionized multiple areas of applied sciences, a particularly important instance of which is medical imaging. Specifically, the theory has provided a different perspective on the important problem of optimal sampling in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), with an ever-increasing body of works reporting stable and accurate reconstruction of MRI scans from the number of spectral measurements which would have been deemed unacceptably small as recently as five years ago. In this paper, the theory of CS is employed to palliate the problem of long acquisition times, which is known to be a major impediment to the clinical application of high angular resolution diffusion imaging (HARDI). Specifically, we demonstrate that a substantial reduction in data acquisition times is possible through minimization of the number of diffusion encoding gradients required for reliable reconstruction of HARDI scans. The success of such a minimization is primarily due to the availability of spherical ridgelet transformation, which excels in sparsifying HARDI signals. What makes the resulting reconstruction procedure even more accurate is a combination of the sparsity constraints in the diffusion domain with additional constraints imposed on the estimated diffusion field in the spatial domain. Accordingly, the present paper describes an original way to combine the diffusion- and spatial-domain constraints to achieve a maximal reduction in the number of diffusion measurements, while sacrificing little in terms of reconstruction accuracy. Finally, details are provided on an efficient numerical scheme which can be used to solve the aforementioned reconstruction problem by means of standard and readily available estimation tools. The paper is concluded with experimental results which support the practical value of the proposed reconstruction methodology.