Kitware Casts First Release of Shape Analysis Framework

Kitware packaged version 1.0 of its Slicer Shape AnaLysis Toolbox (SlicerSALT), a software framework that helps researchers study differences in the shape of anatomy.

“Researchers can tell more about a disease or a condition like atrophy from how anatomy changes in shape than how it changes in volume,” said Beatriz Paniagua, a technical leader at Kitware and the principal investigator of SlicerSALT. “SlicerSALT takes this into account, using geometry to compute landmarks in organs and bones from biomedical images.”

SlicerSALT creates 3D models from the landmarks and displays them in various views. The framework’s interface does not require a technical background to navigate, so researchers outside of computer science can use it for morphometry analysis. Potential fields of interest include pharmacology, neuroscience, paleontology and orthodontics.

“Researchers can use SlicerSALT to see the progression of an illness, determine the effectiveness of a drug, find differences in fossils, view the results of a procedure or measure how anatomy reacts to therapy,” Paniagua said.

Paniagua will help run a satellite event on shape modeling and analysis at the International Conference On Medical Image Computing & Computer Assisted Intervention (MICCAI 2018). The event, Workshop on Shape in Medical Imaging (ShapeMI), will occur Thursday, September 20, 2018. Jared Vicory, a member of Kitware’s medical computing team, will demo SlicerSALT at the workshop.

Vicory and Paniagua have engineered SlicerSALT with team members at Kitware. They have also worked with researchers at New York University Tandon School of Engineering, Guido Gerig and James Fishbaugh, and researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to add methods to the framework.

The framework stems from 3D Slicer, an application that registers, segments and renders medical data, including MRI, CT and ultrasound scans. As an offspring of 3D Slicer, SlicerSALT is free to download, and its code is open source. To ask technical questions about SlicerSALT, please see the SlicerSALT category on the 3D Slicer forum. To partner with Kitware on SlicerSALT development, please email kitware(at)kitware(dot)com.

Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institute Of Biomedical Imaging And Bioengineering of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R01EB021391. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.

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