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Veterinary Imaging: Neural Networks & Deep Learning

Veterinary Imaging – Metron Software

The term “Neural Network” has been given to a certain form of computation performed by specialized software that in some ways mimics how we think the human brain works. The figure below shows a neural network, where each circle represents an artificial neuron. This neural network has 2 ‘hidden layers’ of neurons, which makes it a rather small (or shallow) neural network.

Equine Neural Networks - Veterinary Imaging

Some networks in practical use today have 150 or more layers of interconnected neurons – and so they are called “deep” networks. The term “Deep Learning” refers to techniques which enable these software programs to train the artificial neurons so that they ‘learn’ to give the correct output. The correct output might be to identify a cat in a photo, or to steer a driverless car along a country road.

At EponaMind we were early developers of neural networks and we are the first company to release a veterinary imaging product that makes use of them. In our Metron software version 8.1 and later, we offer the Intellect Module (US patent pending) which brings the power of neural networks to our imaging products.

With the Intellect Module, our Metron software can automatically label equine radiographs and photographs.

Along with the ability to recognize the anatomy of the horse, Metron’s Intellect Module can accurately pick key-points in images to make measurements – automatically without human help.

When a radiograph is acquired with a Metron-based DR system with the Intellect module, the image is automatically calibrated and hoof measurements made, as shown in the video above. What you are watching in this video is quite amazing – the computer has been taught to pick the points on the radiographs – and its picking them at a human-expert level! Our Metron users have been picking these points for the past 17 years since we introduced the product, and now, as of release 8.1 in 2017 we have taught the computer to do the picking – thanks to neural networks trained by Deep Learning.  No other veterinary imaging software on the market today can do this, Metron’s Intellect Module is US Patent Pending.

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