Multi-focus image fusion using focal area extraction in a large quantity of microscopic images

Jiyoung Lee, Seunghyun Jang, Jungbin Lee, Taehan Kim, Seonghan Kim, Jongbum Seo, Ki Hean Kim, Sejung Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The non-invasive examination of conjunctival goblet cells using a microscope is a novel procedure for the diagnosis of ocular surface diseases. However, it is difficult to generate an all-in-focus image due to the curvature of the eyes and the limited focal depth of the microscope. The microscope acquires multiple images with the axial translation of focus, and the image stack must be processed. Thus, we propose a multi-focus image fusion method to generate an all-in-focus image from multiple microscopic images. First, a bandpass filter is applied to the source images and the focus areas are extracted using Laplacian transformation and thresholding with a morphological operation. Next, a self-adjusting guided filter is applied for the natural connections between local focus images. A window-size-updating method is adopted in the guided filter to reduce the number of parameters. This paper presents a novel algorithm that can operate for a large quantity of images (10 or more) and obtain an all-in-focus image. To quantitatively evaluate the proposed method, two different types of evaluation metrics are used: “full-reference” and “no-reference”. The experimental results demonstrate that this algorithm is robust to noise and capable of preserving local focus information through focal area extraction. Additionally, the proposed method outperforms state-of-the-art approaches in terms of both visual effects and image quality assessments.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7371
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Nov 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Information Systems
  • Instrumentation
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Biochemistry


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