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Scaling Resolution of Gigapixel Whole Slide Images Using Spatial Decomposition on Convolutional Neural Networks

Publication Type
Conference Paper
Book Title
PASC '23: Proceedings of the Platform for Advanced Scientific Computing Conference
Publication Date
Page Numbers
1 to 11
Publisher Location
New York, New York, United States of America
Conference Name
The Platform for Advanced Scientific Computing (PASC)
Conference Location
Davos, Switzerland
Conference Sponsor
Association for Computing Machinery
Conference Date

Gigapixel images are prevalent in scientific domains ranging from remote sensing, and satellite imagery to microscopy, etc. However, training a deep learning model at the natural resolution of those images has been a challenge in terms of both, overcoming the resource limit (e.g. HBM memory constraints), as well as scaling up to a large number of GPUs. In this paper, we trained Residual neural Networks (ResNet) on 22,528 x 22,528-pixel size images using a distributed spatial decomposition method on 2,304 GPUs on the Summit Supercomputer. We applied our method on a Whole Slide Imaging (WSI) dataset from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) database. WSI images can be in the size of 100,000 x 100,000 pixels or even larger, and in this work we studied the effect of image resolution on a classification task, while achieving state-of-the-art AUC scores. Moreover, our approach doesn't need pixel-level labels, since we're avoiding patching from the WSI images completely, while adding the capability of training arbitrary large-size images. This is achieved through a distributed spatial decomposition method, by leveraging the non-block fat-tree interconnect network of the Summit architecture, which enabled GPU-to-GPU direct communication. Finally, detailed performance analysis results are shown, as well as a comparison with a data-parallel approach when possible.