Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Oral health screening by hyperspectral imaging

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
2.06.07  Engineering sciences and technologies  Systems and cybernetics  Biomedical technics 

Code Science Field
T111  Technological sciences  Imaging, image processing 

Code Science Field
2.06  Engineering and Technology  Medical engineering  
Health screening, oral cavity, caries, hyperspectral imaging, spectroscopy, diffuse reflectance, laser fluorescence, restoration, registration
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (25)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  25528  PhD Miran Burmen  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2018  112 
2.  36711  PhD Blaž Cugmas  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2017  24 
3.  50157  Katjuša Fabjan    Technical associate  2017 - 2018 
4.  30442  PhD Aleš Fidler  Stomatology  Researcher  2016 - 2018  194 
5.  34718  PhD Matic Ivančič  Physics  Junior researcher  2016 - 2018  61 
6.  35415  PhD Jurij Jemec  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016  14 
7.  36530  PhD Tim Jerman  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2018  20 
8.  32838  Maša Juvan    Technical associate  2016 
9.  29559  PhD Jaka Katrašnik  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016  16 
10.  37506  PhD Dejan Knez  Systems and cybernetics  Junior researcher  2016 - 2018  26 
11.  35421  PhD Robert Korez  Interdisciplinary research  Researcher  2016 - 2018  38 
12.  35410  PhD Žiga Lesjak  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2018  11 
13.  15678  PhD Boštjan Likar  Systems and cybernetics  Head  2016 - 2018  381 
14.  37292  PhD Hennadii Madan  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2018  11 
15.  27519  PhD Primož Markelj  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2018  20 
16.  31279  PhD Miha Možina  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016  12 
17.  36457  PhD Peter Naglič  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2018  55 
18.  06857  PhD Franjo Pernuš  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2018  520 
19.  50158  Valerija Skopec    Technical associate  2017 - 2018 
20.  28465  PhD Žiga Špiclin  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2018  141 
21.  20383  PhD Dejan Tomaževič  Manufacturing technologies and systems  Researcher  2016 - 2018  94 
22.  37969  PhD Tanja Tomaževič  Stomatology  Researcher  2016 - 2018  60 
23.  39060  Andreja Tomšič Korelc    Technical associate  2016 
24.  31986  PhD Peter Usenik  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016  15 
25.  23404  PhD Tomaž Vrtovec  Systems and cybernetics  Researcher  2016 - 2018  204 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0312  University Medical Centre Ljubljana  Ljubljana  5057272000  77,744 
2.  1538  University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Electrical Engineering  Ljubljana  1626965  27,840 
Across the Europe and world, oral diseases present a major public health burden. Expenditure on the treatment of oral conditions often exceeds that of other diseases including cancer, heart disease, stroke and dementia, on average presenting about 10% of the annual health expenditure across the EU. Among the two most prominent oral disease and conditions are dental caries, which affects over 60% of school children and nearly all adults, while severe periodontal diseases affect from 15 to 20% of middle-aged adults. Together, dental cavities and periodontal diseases form the two most prominent causes of tooth loss. An efficient management of the oral diseases could be achieved by novel state-of-the-art oral health screening systems that are suitable for clinical and home use. In this way, the oral health could be efficiently managed and monitored by each individual, lowering the burden on the healthcare systems and, at the same time, raising the awareness of people on importance of the everyday oral hygiene, the latter being particularly important in the case of children. However, achieving such ambitious objectives requires innovative and efficient solutions in several research fields. First, the information required to diagnose the most prominent oral disease must be acquired by noninvasive means. The most promising results for detection and quantification of diseased hard dental tissues were obtained by laser fluorescence (LF) and diffuse reflectance (DR) spectroscopy in the near infrared (NIR) spectral range. LF provides information on the mineral content, structure and presence of bacteria in the surface layers of hard dental tissues, while the less scattered NIR light penetrates deeper into the tissue and thereby complements the LF information. Furthermore, noninvasive functional and structural assessment of soft tissues can be efficiently conducted in the visible and the very near infrared spectral range. As effective screening for pathological and other changes of the oral cavity also requires detailed spatial information, hyperspectral imaging systems (HIS) that efficiently merge the spectral and spatial information seem as a perfect choice. However, the substantial differences among the three noninvasive optical techniques pose several challenges ranging from technical issues related to the spatial constraints imposed by the oral cavity, to the even more demanding analysis of the acquired multimodal hyperspectral images. Furthermore, imaging of the entire oral cavity may require acquisition of multiple partially overlapping hyperspectral images and the hyperspectral images of the oral cavity acquired at different time points will have to be registered into a common reference coordinate frame where the joint information can be efficiently analyzed and the temporal changes of oral cavity, resulting from progression of a disease or treatment, quantified. In the proposed project, we are going to focus on three main aspects of the oral cavity screening system: a) design of optical and illumination systems for acquisition of high fidelity multimodal hyperspectral images, b) development of novel robust image restoration and multimodal registration methods that will bring the hyperspectral images into a common reference coordinate frame where the acquired spectral, spatial and temporal information can be efficiently analyzed, and c) methods for reliable detection and quantification of incipient and secondary caries lesions and lesion activity from the restored and registered multimodal hyperspectral images covering the visible and NIR spectral range. With the proposed project, we expect to make a significant step towards screening systems for efficient management of oral health by reliable noninvasive diagnosis of oral diseases at the earliest stage. Such screening systems could significantly improve the quality of life among the aging European population and potentially result in huge costs savings associated to the tre
Significance for science
Besides numerous successful basic and application oriented research projects and new products and technologies developed, the research group has published 64 peer reviewed SCI journal papers in the last five years, 40 in the 1st quarter of SCI journals, out of which, 5 papers were published in the 1st journals of the SCI fields. Our SCI publications received over 1900 clear citations in the last ten years. Based on these outstanding past scientific references, we expect that the results of the proposed project, which will be reported in the top journals, will also significantly contribute to the development of technical and natural sciences. The proposed research project will be mainly important for the development of new and improvement of existing methods in the field of biomedical imaging. Furthermore, the objectives of the proposed project tackle the key challenges of European research and innovation that are related to health, demographic change and well-being. As such, the project provides numerous opportunities for extending the basic research within the EU Horizon 2020 founding scheme.
Significance for the country
Hyperspectral imaging (HI) is a promising state-of-the-art noninvasive optical technique with the potential to detect, localize and quantify the most prominent oral diseases and monitor their progress or treatment. In the past we have successfully applied HI systems to various fields of research including several studies on the assessment of sound and diseased hard dental tissues by near infrared (NIR) diffuse reflectance and laser fluorescence (LF) HI, and assessment of soft tissues by NIR and visible DR spectroscopy. In the field of medical image analysis, we have developed numerous robust 2D and 3D multimodal image registration methods and novel methods for image analysis. The quality and relevance of the conducted research reflects in the track of top-ranking SCI journal publications with numerous citations. Therefore, we expect that the proposed project is going to be successful and result in novel methods for screening of the oral cavity. The potentials of exploiting the results of the proposed project are numerous. Foremost, it is the patients (citizens) that can expect to benefit from the more reliable and earlier detection of oral diseases. With realization of the proposed project, numerous opportunities to extend the research and take full advantage of the EU Horizon 2020 innovation and research framework that supports development of novel solutions and services for self-management of health and diseases, will become possible. Furthermore, development of state-of-the-art personal oral cavity screening and health management system could lead to huge cost savings in the healthcare sector. In terms of numbers, EU member states spend about 10% of GDP on healthcare, of which 10% is spent on oral diseases (€ 80 Billion), the vast majority on treatment of advanced caries. If successful, the project might also serve as a basis for establishing a spinoff company for clinical and personal oral health screening systems.
Most important scientific results Interim report, final report
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Interim report, final report
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