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Evaluation of automated airway morphological quantification for assessing fibrosing lung disease

Pakzad, A; Cheung, WK; Van Moorsel, CHM; Quan, K; Mogulkoc, N; Bartholmai, BJ; Van Es, HW; ... Jacob, J; + view all (2024) Evaluation of automated airway morphological quantification for assessing fibrosing lung disease. Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering: Imaging and Visualization , 12 (1) , Article 2325361. 10.1080/21681163.2024.2325361. Green open access

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Abstract

Abnormal airway dilatation, termed traction bronchiectasis, is a typical feature of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). Volumetric computed tomography (CT) imaging captures the loss of normal airway tapering in IPF. We postulated that automated quantification of airway abnormalities could provide estimates of IPF disease extent and severity. We propose AirQuant, an automated computational pipeline that takes an airway segmentation and CT image as input and systematically parcellates the airway tree into its lobes and generational branches, deriving airway structural measures from chest CT. Importantly, AirQuant prevents the occurrence of spurious airway branches by thick wave propagation and removes loops in the airway-tree by graph search, overcoming limitations of existing airway skeletonisation algorithms. Tapering between airway segments (intertapering) and airway tortuosity computed by AirQuant were compared between 14 healthy participants and 14 IPF patients. Airway intertapering was significantly reduced in IPF patients, and airway tortuosity was significantly increased when compared to healthy controls. Differences were most marked in the lower lobes, conforming to the typical distribution of IPF-related damage. AirQuant is an open-source pipeline that avoids limitations of existing airway quantification algorithms and has clinical interpretability. Automated airway measurements may have potential as novel imaging biomarkers of IPF severity and disease extent.

Type: Article
Title: Evaluation of automated airway morphological quantification for assessing fibrosing lung disease
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/21681163.2024.2325361
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/21681163.2024.2325361
Language: English
Additional information: © 2024 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The terms on which this article has been published allow the posting of the Accepted Manuscript in a repository by the author(s) or with their consent.
Keywords: Airway morphology, Bronchiectasis, Computed tomography
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Computer Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Neurodegenerative Diseases
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Medicine > Respiratory Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science > Population Science and Experimental Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science > Population Science and Experimental Medicine > MRC Unit for Lifelong Hlth and Ageing
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10190837
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