Acrosome integrity assessment of boar spermatozoa images using an early fusion of texture and contour descriptors

Comput Methods Programs Biomed. 2015 Jun;120(1):49-64. doi: 10.1016/j.cmpb.2015.03.005. Epub 2015 Mar 23.


The assessment of the state of the acrosome is a priority in artificial insemination centres since it is one of the main causes of function loss. In this work, boar spermatozoa present in gray scale images acquired with a phase-contrast microscope have been classified as acrosome-intact or acrosome-damaged, after using fluorescent images for creating the ground truth. Based on shape prior criteria combined with Otsu's thresholding, regional minima and watershed transform, the spermatozoa heads were segmented and registered. One of the main novelties of this proposal is that, unlike what previous works stated, the obtained results show that the contour information of the spermatozoon head is important for improving description and classification. Other of this work novelties is that it confirms that combining different texture descriptors and contour descriptors yield the best classification rates for this problem up to date. The classification was performed with a Support Vector Machine backed by a Least Squares training algorithm and a linear kernel. Using the biggest acrosome intact-damaged dataset ever created, the early fusion approach followed provides a 0.9913 F-Score, outperforming all previous related works.

Keywords: Acrosome integrity; Contour description; Early fusion; SVM; Texture description.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acrosome / physiology*
  • Algorithms
  • Animals
  • Fourier Analysis
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Insemination, Artificial
  • Least-Squares Analysis
  • Male
  • Microscopy, Phase-Contrast
  • Models, Statistical
  • ROC Curve
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Software
  • Sperm Head / physiology
  • Spermatozoa / physiology*
  • Support Vector Machine
  • Swine