VAMPIRE: Vascular Assessment and Measurement Platform for Images of the REtina
The retina is one of the few places in the body allowing easy, non-invasive observation of blood vessels. There is clear evidence that the retinal vasculature provides early indicators of systemic conditions such as diabetes, stroke and cardiovascular disease: prodromal changes to the retinal capillary system can occur well before other symptoms are observed. Furthermore, the retinal vasculature is thought to predict neurovascular disease and neurodegeneration. Retinal image analysis may therefore provide an additional means to stratify risk and help identify people who would benefit from early lifestyle changes and preventative therapies.
Against this backdrop, Prof Emanuele Trucco (CVIP Dundee, School of Computing) and Dr Tom MacGillivray (Clinical Rsearch Imaging Centre, Univ of Edinburgh) have created and co-ordinate VAMPIRE (Vascular Measurement and Assessment Platform for Images of the REtina). The VAMPIRE project is a international collaboration of medical image analysis centres in Europe, Asia, the US and South America.
The VAMPIRE project is articulated along two main strands:
(1) RETINAL BIOMARKERS.
The VAMPIRE software suite translates cutting-edge image processing techniques to the clinical research environment, allowing clinical users without image analysis knowledge to obtain morphometric measurements of the retinal vasculature in biomarker-discovery studies. Current measurements include vessel calibre and related indices (CVRE, CRAE, AVR), bifurcation angles, tortuosity and fractal analysis, in addition to basic functions (OD location, retinal co-ordinate setup, vasculature location, artery-vein classification). To date, VAMPIRE has been used in clinical investigations of retinal biomarkers for cardiovascular disease, genetics, stroke, MS, cerebral malaria, and age-related cognitive change.
(2) RETINAL LESIONS.
Several funded projects in VAMPIRE have addressed the detection and quantification of lesions, especially ischemia, nonperfusion, telangictasia in fluorescein angiogram sequences. This work is a collaboration with the the Jules Stein Eye Research Institute at UCLA (Dr Jean Pierre Hubschman), and an uninterrupted ongoing collaboration since 2002 with OPTOS plc (www.optos.com), market leader in ultra-wide-field-of-view scanning laser ophthalmoscopes.
For further information, including publication list and PDF copies, please refer to the VAMPIRE website: http://vampire.computing.dundee.ac.uk/
Prof. Emanuele Trucco
Dr Lucia Ballerini
Maddalena De Biasi