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Web Image Processing Pipeline (WIPP)

Web Image Processing Pipeline (WIPP)

A computational system developed by NIST for the analysis and measurement of features in live cell cells over time. WIPP has developed a cell tracking app for stem cell research.

WIPP was developed by NIST because of a need to assist imaging scientists with computational solutions to convert raw image tiles to calibrated, stitched, and viewable Giga-pixel images in a way that is interactive and allows measurements and modeling. WIPP is accessible via web. The WIPP interface is being offered free for research purposes and open-source code is also available.

The Web Image Processing module allows a collection of image tiles to be uploaded and processed into calibrated, stitched and segmented images. It generates a hierarchical pyramid representation with a Deep Zoom visualization and processing of gigapixel images is on-demand.

The Web Image Feature Extraction module is used to extract traceable image features from raw images and their corresponding segmented masks. Web Statistical Modeling is under contruction as of 2018.

Stem cell tracking map app

Using WIPP, a cell culture is divided into real locations that are referenced with system akin to using GPS points or quadrants. Users can examine occurrences in a petri dish over time from any point of view, analyze and share results with colleagues. The interface is detailed in a book entitled “Web Microanalysis of Big Image Data”, published in January 2018 by Springer Verlag and in an article published in the journal Stem Cell Research in May 2016.

WIPP is designed to work with induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) cells, which are generated from adult tissue and can form tissues like skin, gastrointestinal tissue, respiratory tissue, blood and bone. Researchers can use the system to measure progress as cells become different cells types. The idea is to understand the cell characteristics so that the cells can produce tissues reliably and reduce dangers such tumor formation which could make them unsafe for therapeutic use.

WIPP overcomes a problem of scale and size in imaging dishes full of thousands of cells, for which three runs of a 5 day experiment could result in a terabyte sized data set. WIPP uses both a server and web interface. The types of data which can be collected include measurements of shape, size, texture, features fluorescence intensities, contrast and rates of change in these measurements. Computations used in experiments are traceable using WIPP, which is expected to make experiments more reproducable. The system could be used for quality control for production of cell therapies.


Further Resources


Large-scale time-lapse microscopy of Oct4 expression in human embryonic stem cell colonies.

Bhadriraju K , et al.



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