Statistical atlas construction via weighted functional boxplots

Yi Hong, Brad Davis, J. S. Marron, Roland Kwitt, Nikhil Singh, Julia S. Kimbell, Elizabeth Pitkin, Richard Superfine, Stephanie D. Davis, Carlton J. Zdanski, Marc Niethammer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


Atlas-building from population data is widely used in medical imaging. However, the emphasis of atlas-building approaches is typically to estimate a spatial alignment to compute a mean/median shape or image based on population data. In this work, we focus on the statistical characterization of the population data, once spatial alignment has been achieved. We introduce and propose the use of the weighted functional boxplot. This allows the generalization of concepts such as the median, percentiles, or outliers to spaces where the data objects are functions, shapes, or images, and allows spatio-temporal atlas-building based on kernel regression. In our experiments, we demonstrate the utility of the approach to construct statistical atlases for pediatric upper airways and corpora callosa revealing their growth patterns. We also define a score system based on the pediatric airway atlas to quantitatively measure the severity of subglottic stenosis (SGS) in the airway. This scoring allows the classification of pre- and post-surgery SGS subjects and radiographically normal controls. Experimental results show the utility of atlas information to assess the effect of airway surgery in children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)684-698
Number of pages15
JournalMedical Image Analysis
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 2014


  • Kernel regression
  • Pediatric upper airways
  • Statistical atlas-building
  • Weighted functional boxplots

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Health Informatics
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Medicine(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Statistical atlas construction via weighted functional boxplots'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Hong, Y., Davis, B., Marron, J. S., Kwitt, R., Singh, N., Kimbell, J. S., Pitkin, E., Superfine, R., Davis, S. D., Zdanski, C. J., & Niethammer, M. (2014). Statistical atlas construction via weighted functional boxplots. Medical Image Analysis, 18(4), 684-698.