Current technology allows MRI and other patient data to be translated into voxel-based 3D models for the purpose of visualization. However, these voxel models are extremely complex and are not suitable for rapid real-time manipulation. For true “on-the-fly” interactivity, polygon-based models must be hand-built using other methods and imported into a game engine.This project develops an algorithm to translate complex datasets into optimized models for real-time interactivity without sacrificing accuracy of the original imaging modality. A working prototype, ready for integration into game engines, has been built with brain tumor data exported from OSIRIX1 and 3D Slicer2 via Mudbox3, retopologized in 3D Coat4 and re-imported to Maya5. White matter tracts detected by Diffusion Tensor Tractography are exported as volume models using 3D Slicer.The model has been integrated into the Unreal Development Kit (UDK)6 game engine to facilitate real-time interactivity across multiple platforms, including Mac, PC, Apple iOS, Google Android, Xbox 360, and SONY PlayStation. New techniques are being explored to automate and accelerate the process of retopologizing models.

1.Osirix – Advanced Open-Source PACS Workstation DICOM Viewer http://www.osirix-viewer.com/

2. 3D Slicer- A multi-platform, free and open source software package for visualization and medical image computing http://www.3dslicer.org

3.MudBox – Autodesk¨ Mudbox™ 3D digital sculpting and digital painting software http://usa.autodesk. com

4.3D Coat – Retopologizing and 3D sculpting software http://3d-coat.com

5.MAYA - Autodesk¨Maya¨ 3D animation software delivers an end-to-end creative workflow with compression tools for animation, modeling, simulation, visual effects, rendering, matchmoving, and compositing on a highly extensible production platform http://usa.autodesk.com

6.Unreal Engine 3 – a complete development framework for PCs, iOS, Xbox 360¨, and PlayStation¨ 3, providing a vast array of core technologies, content creation tools and support infrastructure http://www. unrealengine.com/

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Magnetic resonance imaging--Data processing; Diagnostic imaging--Data processing; Image processing--Digital techniques

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Medical Illustration(MFA)

Department, Program, or Center

Medical Illustration (CHST)


James Perkins

Advisor/Committee Member

Glen Hintz

Advisor/Committee Member

Daniel Orringer


Physical copy available from RIT's Wallace Library at RC78.7.D53 R43 2016


RIT – Main Campus

Plan Codes