Spatial resolution recovery utilizing multi-ray tracing and graphic processing unit in PET image reconstruction
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Depth-of-interaction (DOI) poses a major challenge for a PET system to achieve uniform spatial resolution across the field-of-view, particularly for small animal and organ-dedicated PET systems. In this work, we implemented an analytical method to model system matrix for resolution recovery, which was then incorporated in PET image reconstruction on a graphical processing unit platform, due to its parallel processing capacity. The method utilizes the concepts of virtual DOI layers and multi-ray tracing to calculate the coincidence detection response function for a given line-of-response. The accuracy of the proposed method was validated for a small-bore PET insert to be used for simultaneous PET/MR breast imaging. In addition, the performance comparisons were studied among the following three cases: 1) no physical DOI and no resolution modeling; 2) two physical DOI layers and no resolution modeling; and 3) no physical DOI design but with a different number of virtual DOI layers. The image quality was quantitatively evaluated in terms of spatial resolution (full-width-half-maximum and position offset), contrast recovery coefficient and noise. The results indicate that the proposed method has the potential to be used as an alternative to other physical DOI designs and achieve comparable imaging performances, while reducing detector/system design cost and complexity.
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