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Open AccessArticle

Zebrafish Larvae Phenotype Classification from Bright-field Microscopic Images Using a Two-Tier Deep-Learning Pipeline

by Shang Shang 1, Sijie Lin 2,* and Fengyu Cong 1,*
School of Biomedical Engineering, Faculty of Electronic Information and Electrical Engineering, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024, China
College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Key Laboratory of Yangtze River Environment, Shanghai Institute of Pollution Control and Ecological Security, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092, China
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(4), 1247;
Received: 30 December 2019 / Revised: 5 February 2020 / Accepted: 10 February 2020 / Published: 13 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Intelligent Processing on Image and Optical Information)
Classification of different zebrafish larvae phenotypes is useful for studying the environmental influence on embryo development. However, the scarcity of well-annotated training images and fuzzy inter-phenotype differences hamper the application of machine-learning methods in phenotype classification. This study develops a deep-learning approach to address these challenging problems. A convolutional network model with compressed separable convolution kernels is adopted to address the overfitting issue caused by insufficient training data. A two-tier classification pipeline is designed to improve the classification accuracy based on fuzzy phenotype features. Our method achieved an averaged accuracy of 91% for all the phenotypes and maximum accuracy of 100% for some phenotypes (e.g., dead and chorion). We also compared our method with the state-of-the-art methods based on the same dataset. Our method obtained dramatic accuracy improvement up to 22% against the existing method. This study offers an effective deep-learning solution for classifying difficult zebrafish larvae phenotypes based on very limited training data. View Full-Text
Keywords: zebrafish larva; microscopy image analysis; deep neural network zebrafish larva; microscopy image analysis; deep neural network
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MDPI and ACS Style

Shang, S.; Lin, S.; Cong, F. Zebrafish Larvae Phenotype Classification from Bright-field Microscopic Images Using a Two-Tier Deep-Learning Pipeline. Appl. Sci. 2020, 10, 1247.

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