Deep, deep learning with BART

Moritz Blumenthal, Guanxiong Luo, Martin Schilling, H Christian M Holme, Martin Uecker*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


PURPOSE: To develop a deep-learning-based image reconstruction framework for reproducible research in MRI.

METHODS: The BART toolbox offers a rich set of implementations of calibration and reconstruction algorithms for parallel imaging and compressed sensing. In this work, BART was extended by a nonlinear operator framework that provides automatic differentiation to allow computation of gradients. Existing MRI-specific operators of BART, such as the nonuniform fast Fourier transform, are directly integrated into this framework and are complemented by common building blocks used in neural networks. To evaluate the use of the framework for advanced deep-learning-based reconstruction, two state-of-the-art unrolled reconstruction networks, namely the Variational Network and MoDL, were implemented.

RESULTS: State-of-the-art deep image-reconstruction networks can be constructed and trained using BART's gradient-based optimization algorithms. The BART implementation achieves a similar performance in terms of training time and reconstruction quality compared to the original implementations based on TensorFlow.

CONCLUSION: By integrating nonlinear operators and neural networks into BART, we provide a general framework for deep-learning-based reconstruction in MRI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)678-693
Number of pages16
JournalMagnetic Resonance in Medicine
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2023


  • Deep Learning
  • Neural Networks, Computer
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging/methods
  • Algorithms
  • Calibration
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted/methods
  • deep learning
  • parallel imaging
  • MRI
  • inverse problems
  • automatic differentiation
  • image reconstruction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

Fields of Expertise

  • Human- & Biotechnology
  • Information, Communication & Computing


  • BioTechMed-Graz


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