MPIDR Working Paper

Hidden Markov random field and FRAME modelling for TCA-image analysis

Streso, K., Lagona, F.

MPIDR Working Paper WP-2005-032, 6 Seiten (Oktober 2005).
Rostock, Max-Planck-Institut für demografische Forschung

Also: Conference paper for the 3rd IASTED International Conference on Signal processing, pattern recognition, and applications - SPPRA 2006, Innsbruck (Austria), February 2006 Also published in: Proceedings of the 3rd IASTED International Conference on Signal processing, pattern recognition, and applications. ACTA Press: Anaheim [et la.] 2006, 310-315


Tooth Cementum Annulation (TCA) is an age estimation method carried out on thin cross sections of the root of human teeth. Age is computed by adding the tooth eruption age to the count of annual incremental lines that are called tooth rings and appear in the cementum band. Algorithms to denoise and segment the digital image of the tooth section are considered a crucial step towards computer-assisted TCA. The approach pursued in this paper relies on modelling the images as hidden Markov random fields, where gray values are assumed to be pixelwise conditionally independent and normally distributed, given a hidden random field of labels. These unknown labels have to be estimated to segment the image. To account for long-range dependence among the observed values and for periodicity in the placement of tooth rings, the Gibbsian label distribution is specified by a potential function that incorporates macro-features of the TCA-image (a FRAME model). Estimation of the model parameters is carried out by an EM-algorithm that exploits the mean field approximation of the label distribution. Segmentation is based on the predictive distribution of the labels given the observed gray values. KEYWORDS: EM, FRAME, Gibbs distribution, (hidden) Markov random field, mean field approximation, TCA