Digital measurement of gene expression in a cDNA micro-array

Edward R. Dougherty, Yidong Chen, Sinan Batman, Michael L. Bittner

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Gene expression can be quantitatively analyzed by hybridizing fluor-tagged mRNA to targets on a cDNA micro- array. Comparison of expression levels arising from co- hybridized samples is achieved by taking ratios of average expression levels for individual genes. The present paper concerns image processing to automatically segment digitized micro-arrays and measure median gene expression levees across cDNA target sites. The main difficulty arises from determination of the target site when signal intensity is low. Segmentation must be accomplished for target sites that can possess highly unstable geometry and consist of a relatively small number of pixels. Segmentation must also be computationally efficient. The present paper proposes a nonparametric statistical method that separates target site from local background using the Mann-Whitney test.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-73
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes
EventMedical Imaging 1997: Image Processing - Newport Beach, CA, United States
Duration: Feb 25 1997Feb 25 1997


  • Gene expression
  • Mann-Whitney test
  • Segmentation
  • Target detection
  • cDNA micro-array

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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