Preoperative Prediction of Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Neoplasms Grading Based on Enhanced Computed Tomography Imaging: Validation of Deep Learning with a Convolutional Neural Network
Neuroendocrinology . 2020;110(5):338-350. doi: 10.1159/000503291. Epub 2019 Sep 13.
Yanji Luo, Xin Chen, Jie Chen, Chenyu Song, Jingxian Shen, Huanhui Xiao, Minhu Chen, Zi-Ping Li, Bingsheng Huang, Shi-Ting Feng
Introduction: The pathological grading of pancreatic neuroendocrine neoplasms (pNENs) is an independent predictor of survival and indicator for treatment. Deep learning (DL) with a convolutional neural network (CNN) may improve the preoperative prediction of pNEN grading.
Methods: Ninety-three pNEN patients with preoperative contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CECT) from Hospital I were retrospectively enrolled. A CNN-based DL algorithm was applied to the CECT images to obtain 3 models (arterial, venous, and arterial/venous models), the performances of which were evaluated via an eightfold cross-validation technique. The CECT images of the optimal phase were used for comparing the DL and traditional machine learning (TML) models in predicting the pathological grading of pNENs. The performance of radiologists by using qualitative and quantitative computed tomography findings was also evaluated. The best DL model from the eightfold cross-validation was evaluated on an independent testing set of 19 patients from Hospital II who were scanned on a different scanner. The Kaplan-Meier (KM) analysis was employed for survival analysis.
Results: The area under the curve (AUC; 0.81) of arterial phase in validation set was significantly higher than those of venous (AUC 0.57, p = 0.03) and arterial/venous phase (AUC 0.70, p = 0.03) in predicting the pathological grading of pNENs. Compared with the TML models, the DL model gave a higher (although insignificantly) AUC. The highest OR was achieved for the p ratio <0.9, the AUC and accuracy for diagnosing G3 pNENs were 0.80 and 79.1% respectively. The DL algorithm achieved an AUC of 0.82 and an accuracy of 88.1% for the independent testing set. The KM analysis showed a statistical significant difference between the predicted G1/2 and G3 groups in the progression-free survival (p = 0.001) and overall survival (p < 0.001).
Conclusion: The CNN-based DL method showed a relatively robust performance in predicting pathological grading of pNENs from CECT images.
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