Microvessel quantification by fully convolutional neural networks associated with type 2 inflammation in chronic rhinosinusitis

Wendong Liu, Xing Liu, Nan Zhang, Jian Li, Yihui Wen, Yi Wei, Zhengqi Li, Tong Lu, Weiping Wen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Background The pathogenesis of chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) is still unclear, and little is known about angiogenesis in this disease. We utilized a fully convolutional network (FCN), which has been extensively used in image processing to study angiogenesis in CRS. Objective To explore the tissue quantification of microvessels and their potential association with inflammation in CRS by using FCN to reflect the angiogenesis condition in CRS. Methods For endotyping of CRS, tissue homogenates of 79 patients with CRS who had undergone functional endoscopic sinus surgery and 17 control subjects were analyzed for interferon gamma, transforming growth factor beta, interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-5, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, IL-17, tumor necrosis factor alpha, eosinophilic cationic protein, immunoglobulin E, and Staphylococcus aureus-immunoglobulin E(SE-IgE). A total of 552 hematoxylin and eosin-stained images of 27 CRS tissue samples were used to develop an FCN, going through training, validation, and evaluation processes. An optimized FCN was applied to quantify the microvessels of tissue samples of all subjects. Correlation analysis between microvessel quantification with phenotype, endotype, clinical characteristics, and cytokine expression of CRS was carried out. Results Quantification of microvessels in type 2 and non-type 2 CRS demonstrated considerable differences, with a higher expression in type 2 CRS. There was a strong negative correlation between the area ratio of microvessels with tissue tumor necrosis factor alpha and transforming growth factor beta levels and a mildly positive correlation with tissue IL-5 and eosinophilic cationic protein concentration. Conclusion FCN proved to facilitate the analysis of microvessels in airway tissue samples. This study elucidated the close association of angiogenesis with endotyping, suggesting that treatment aiming at antagonizing angiogenesis may assist to the therapy for the recrudescent and refractory CRS.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)697-704.e1
Number of pages6344
JournalAnnals of allergy, asthma & immunology : official publication of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 4 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Immunology and Allergy


Dive into the research topics of 'Microvessel quantification by fully convolutional neural networks associated with type 2 inflammation in chronic rhinosinusitis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this