IBM, Mayo Clinic speed up 3D medical imaging

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The Mayo Clinic and IBM reported that they have sped up the processing of 3D medical images using parallel computer architecture and memory bandwidth. They will present the results this week at the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) International Symposium on biomedical imaging in Washington, D.C.

According to researchers with both firms, the advance aids image registration, the computer-enhanced alignment of two medical images obtained at different dates or by using different imaging devices, in three-dimensional space. With the images properly aligned over one another, a radiologist can more easily detect structural changes such as the growth or shrinkage of tumors.

Through porting and optimization of Mayo Clinic's image registration application on the IBM BladeCenter QS20 Cell Blade, the researchers claimed that the application produced image results 50 times faster than the application running on a traditional processor configuration.