Generalized methodology for radiomic feature selection and modeling in predicting clinical outcomes

Jing Yang, Lei Xu, Pengfei Yang, Yidong Wan, Chen Luo, Eric Alexander Yen, Yun Lu, Feng Chen, Zhongjie Lu, Yi Rong, Tianye Niu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background. Quantitative radiomic features of medical images could provide clinical significance in assisting decision-making, but the existing feature selection and modeling methods are usually parameter-dependent. We aim to develop and validate a generalized radiomic method applicable to a variety of clinical outcomes. Methods and materials. A generalized methodology for radiomic feature selection and modeling ('GRFM' for short), including two-step feature selection and logistic regression, was proposed for studying clinical outcomes correlations. The two-step feature selection consists of Pearson correlation analysis followed by a sequential forward floating selection algorithm to identify robust feature subsets. We also applied an adaptive searching strategy to systematically determine globally optimal parameters, rather than relying on preset parameters. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) was used to evaluate the performance of three outcomes: lymph node metastasis of gastric cancer (GC), the five-year survival status of high-grade osteosarcoma (HOS), and the pathological grade of pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (pNETs). Results. The optimal Pearson thresholds were 0.85, 0.80 and 0.75, and the optimal feature numbers were 11, 14 and 8 in GC, HOS and pNETs, respectively. The AUC values of the three predictive models combined with the corresponding parameters were 0.9017 versus 0.9026, 0.7652 versus 0.7113, and 0.8438 versus 0.8212 for the training and validation cohorts, showing promissing generality and classifier performance . Conclusion. The proposed method was helpful in predicting different clinical outcomes, and has potential application as a general and noninvasive prediction tool to guide clinical decision-making in various cancer sites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number215005
JournalPhysics in medicine and biology
Issue number21
StatePublished - Nov 7 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • clinical outcome
  • general methodology
  • preoperative prediction
  • radiomics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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