Convolutional neural network for histopathological analysis of osteosarcoma

Rashika Mishra, Ovidiu Daescu, Patrick Leavey, Dinesh Rakheja, Anita Sengupta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Pathologists often deal with high complexity and sometimes disagreement over osteosarcoma tumor classification due to cellular heterogeneity in the dataset. Segmentation and classification of histology tissue in H&E stained tumor image datasets is a challenging task because of intra-class variations, inter-class similarity, crowded context, and noisy data. In recent years, deep learning approaches have led to encouraging results in breast cancer and prostate cancer analysis. In this article, we propose convolutional neural network (CNN) as a tool to improve efficiency and accuracy of osteosarcoma tumor classification into tumor classes (viable tumor, necrosis) versus nontumor. The proposed CNN architecture contains eight learned layers: three sets of stacked two convolutional layers interspersed with max pooling layers for feature extraction and two fully connected layers with data augmentation strategies to boost performance. The use of a neural network results in higher accuracy of average 92% for the classification. We compare the proposed architecture with three existing and proven CNN architectures for image classification: AlexNet, LeNet, and VGGNet. We also provide a pipeline to calculate percentage necrosis in a given whole slide image. We conclude that the use of neural networks can assure both high accuracy and efficiency in osteosarcoma classification.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)313-325
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Computational Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2018


  • convolutional neural network
  • histology image analysis
  • osteosarcoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Computational Mathematics
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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