Automating, Analyzing and Improving Pupillometry with Machine Learning Algorithms

  • György Kalmár Department of Image Processing and Computer Graphics, Faculty of Science and Informatics, University of Szeged
  • Alexandra Büki Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Szeged
  • Gabriella Kékesi Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Szeged
  • Gyöngyi Horváth Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Szeged
  • László G. Nyúl Department of Image Processing and Computer Graphics, Faculty of Science and Informatics, University of Szeged
Keywords: pupillometry, classification, curve properties, U-Net


The investigation of the pupillary light reflex (PLR) is a well-known method to provide information about the functionality of the autonomic nervous system. Pupillometry, a non-invasive technique, was applied to study the PLR alterations in a new, schizophrenia-like rat substrain, named WISKET. The pupil responses to light impulses were recorded with an infrared camera; the videos were automatically processed and features were extracted. Besides the classical statistical analysis (ANOVA), feature selection and classification were applied to reveal the significant differences in the PLR parameters between the control and WISKET animals. Based on these results, the disadvantages of this method were analyzed and the measurement process was redesigned and improved. The automated pupil detection method has also been adapted to the new videos. 2564 images were annotated manually and used to train a fully-convolutional neural network to produce pupil mask images. The method was evaluated on 329 test images and achieved 4% median relative error. With the new setup, the pupil detection became reliable and the new data acquisition offers robustness to the experiments.


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How to Cite
Kalmár, G., Büki, A., Kékesi, G., Horváth, G., & Nyúl, L. G. (2019). Automating, Analyzing and Improving Pupillometry with Machine Learning Algorithms. Acta Cybernetica, 24(2), 197-209.
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