Benchmark on Automatic 6-month-old Infant Brain Segmentation Algorithms; The iSeg-2017 Challenge

Published in IEEE Transactions in Medical Imaging (TMI), 2019

Authors: Li Wang, ..., Adrià Casamitjana, ... and Dinggang Shen



Accurate segmentation of infant brain magnetic resonance (MR) images into white matter (WM), gray matter (GM), and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is an indispensable foundation for early studying of brain growth patterns and morphological changes in neurodevelopmental disorders. Nevertheless, in the isointense phase (approximately 6-9 months of age), due to inherent myelination and maturation process, WM and GM exhibit similar levels of intensity in both T1-weighted (T1w) and T2-weighted (T2w) MR images, making tissue segmentation very challenging. Despite many efforts were devoted to brain segmentation, only few studies have focused on the segmentation of 6-month infant brain images. With the idea of boosting methodological development in the community, iSeg-2017 challenge ( provides a set of 6-month infant subjects with manual labels for training and testing the participating methods. Among the 21 automatic segmentation methods participating in iSeg-2017, we review the 8 top-ranked teams, in terms of Dice ratio, modified Hausdorff distance and average surface distance, and introduce their pipelines, implementations, as well as source codes. We further discuss limitations and possible future directions. We hope the dataset in iSeg-2017 and this review article could provide insights into methodological development for the community.