Boosting Whole Slide Image Classification from the Perspectives of Distribution, Correlation and Magnification
Linhao Qu*, Zhiwei Yang*, Minghong Duan, Yingfan Ma, Shuo Wang, Manning Wang†, Zhijian Song†
International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV 2023)
Bag-based multiple instance learning (MIL) methods have become the mainstream for Whole Slide Image (WSI) classification. However, there are still three important issues that have not been fully addressed: (1) positive bags with a low positive instance ratio are prone to the influence of a large number of negative instances; (2) the correlation between local and global features of pathology images has not been fully modeled; and (3) there is a lack of effective information interaction between different magnifications. In this paper, we propose MILBooster, a powerful dual-scale multi-stage MIL framework to address these issues from the perspectives of distribution, correlation, and magnification. Specifically, to address issue (1), we propose a plug-and-play bag filter that effectively increases the positive instance ratio of positive bags. For issue (2), we propose a novel window-based Transformer architecture called PiceBlock to model the correlation between local and global features of pathology images. For issue (3), we propose a dual-branch architecture to process different magnifications and design an information interaction module called Scale Mixer for efficient information interaction between them. We conducted extensive experiments on four clinical WSI classification tasks using three datasets. MILBooster achieved new state-of-the-art performance on all these tasks. Codes will be available.