Designing Single- and Multiple-Shell Sampling Schemes for Diffusion MRI Using Spherical Code
In diffusion MRI (dMRI), determining an appropriate sampling scheme is crucial for acquiring the maximal amount of information for data reconstruction and analysis using the minimal amount of time. For single-shell acquisition, uniform sampling without directional preference is usually favored. To achieve this, a commonly used approach is the Electrostatic Energy Minimization (EEM) method introduced in dMRI by Jones et al. However, the electrostatic energy formulation in EEM is not directly related to the goal of optimal sampling-scheme design, i.e., achieving large angular separation between sampling points. A mathematically more natural approach is to consider the Spherical Code (SC) formulation, which aims to achieve uniform sampling by maximizing the minimal angular difference between sampling points on the unit sphere. Although SC is well studied in the mathematical literature, its current formulation is limited to a single shell and is not applicable to multiple shells. Moreover, SC, or more precisely continuous SC (CSC), currently can only be applied on the continuous unit sphere and hence cannot be used in situations where one or several subsets of sampling points need to be determined from an existing sampling scheme. In this case, discrete SC (DSC) is required. In this paper, we propose novel DSC and CSC methods for designing uniform single-/multi-shell sampling schemes. The DSC and CSC formulations are solved respectively by Mixed Integer Linear Programming (MILP) and a gradient descent approach. A fast greedy incremental solution is also provided for both DSC and CSC. To our knowledge, this is the first work to use SC formulation for designing sampling schemes in dMRI. Experimental results indicate that our methods obtain larger angular separation and better rotational invariance than the generalized EEM (gEEM) method currently used in the Human Connectome Project (HCP).
KeywordsSampling Scheme Gradient Descent Single Shell Spherical Code Gradient Descent Approach
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