Signal-to-Noise Enhancement in Imaging Applications Using a Time-Series of Images

The invention offered for licensing relates to the field of imaging and specifically to the field of medical imaging. The apparatus and method of the invention provide for noise reduction in imaging applications that use a time-series of images. In one embodiment of the invention, a time-series of images is acquired using a same imaging protocol of the same subject area, but the images are spaced in time by one or more time intervals (e.g. 1, 2, 3 …seconds apart). A sub-region is projected across all of the images to perform a localized analysis (corresponding X-Y pixels or X-Y-Z voxels are analyzed across all images) that identifies temporal components within each sub-region. Subsequently, within the sub-regions, only those temporal components are selected whose amplitude is above a predetermined amplitude threshold. The images are then reconstructed using the sub-regions with reduced components. A maximal-intensity-projection (MIP) is applied in the temporal domain (tMIP) in order to obtain a single image with reduced noise (this can be done either at the sub-region level or at the reconstructed image level). The technology can be applied to a broad spectrum of medical imaging technologies such as MRI, X-Ray, CT and others.

Potential Commercial Applications: Competitive Advantages:
  • Medical imaging and diagnostics applied to MRI, X-Ray, CT scans or other imaging modalities including PET, SPECT, ultrasound or optical.
  • Enhancing signal-to-noise of medical imaging techniques.

Development Stage:
  • Proof of concept has been demonstrated. Data is available.
  • Need to acquire further data to establish clinical utility of the method and to further optimize the protocol.


Han Wen (NHLBI)  ➽ more inventions...

Vinay Pai (NHLBI)  ➽ more inventions...

Intellectual Property:
PCT Pat: 8,942,454 issued 2015-01-27
US Application No. 13/513,150 filed on 2012-05-31
US Application No. 61/266,442 filed on 2009-12-03

Fish DA, Grochmalicki J, Pike ER. Scanning singular-value-decomposition method for restoration of images with space-variant blur. J Opt Soc Am A, 13(3), pp. 464-469, March 1996.
Du X, Dunxu Y, Cuihua L, Jing L. "A novel approach to SVD-based image filtering improvement," International Conference on Computer Science and Software Engineering, vol 6, pp. 133-136, 2008.

Collaboration Opportunity:

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in collaborative research to implement the technology described above on specific commercial platforms. Please contact Denise Crooks, Ph.D. at 301-435-0103 or via e-mail at for more information.

Licensing Contact:
Michael Shmilovich, J.D.
Phone: 301-435-5019

OTT Reference No: E-292-2009-0
Updated: Sep 10, 2015