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Combination of snapshot hyperspectral retinal imaging and optical coherence tomography to identify Alzheimer’s disease patients

Journal Contribution - Journal Article

Introduction The eye offers potential for the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD) with retinal imaging techniques being explored to quantify amyloid accumulation and aspects of neurodegeneration. To assess these changes, this proof-of-concept study combined hyperspectral imaging and optical coherence tomography to build a classification model to differentiate between AD patients and controls. Methods In a memory clinic setting, patients with a diagnosis of clinically probable AD (n = 10) or biomarker-proven AD (n = 7) and controls (n = 22) underwent non-invasive retinal imaging with an easy-to-use hyperspectral snapshot camera that collects information from 16 spectral bands (460-620 nm, 10-nm bandwidth) in one capture. The individuals were also imaged using optical coherence tomography for assessing retinal nerve fiber layer thickness (RNFL). Dedicated image preprocessing analysis was followed by machine learning to discriminate between both groups. Results Hyperspectral data and retinal nerve fiber layer thickness data were used in a linear discriminant classification model to discriminate between AD patients and controls. Nested leave-one-out cross-validation resulted in a fair accuracy, providing an area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.74 (95% confidence interval [0.60-0.89]). Inner loop results showed that the inclusion of the RNFL features resulted in an improvement of the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve: for the most informative region assessed, the average area under the receiver operating characteristic curve was 0.70 (95% confidence interval [0.55, 0.86]) and 0.79 (95% confidence interval [0.65, 0.93]), respectively. The robust statistics used in this study reduces the risk of overfitting and partly compensates for the limited sample size. Conclusions This study in a memory-clinic-based cohort supports the potential of hyperspectral imaging and suggests an added value of combining retinal imaging modalities. Standardization and longitudinal data on fully amyloid-phenotyped cohorts are required to elucidate the relationship between retinal structure and cognitive function and to evaluate the robustness of the classification model.
Journal: Alzheimers Research & Therapy
ISSN: 1758-9193
Issue: 1
Volume: 12
Number of pages: 13
Publication year:2020
Keywords:Retina