An unsupervised bayesian approach for the joint reconstruction and classification of cutaneous reflectance confocal microscopy images Machine Learning

This paper studies a new Bayesian algorithm for the joint reconstruction and classification of reflectance confocal microscopy (RCM) images, with application to the identification of human skin lentigo. The proposed Bayesian approach takes advantage of the distribution of the multiplicative speckle noise affecting the true reflectivity of these images and of appropriate priors for the unknown model parameters. A Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithm is proposed to jointly estimate the model parameters and the image of true reflectivity while classifying images according to the distribution of their reflectivity. Precisely, a Metropolis-whitin-Gibbs sampler is investigated to sample the posterior distribution of the Bayesian model associated with RCM images and to build estimators of its parameters, including labels indicating the class of each RCM image. The resulting algorithm is applied to synthetic data and to real images from a clinical study containing healthy and lentigo patients.

Priors over Recurrent Continuous Time Processes

Neural Information Processing Systems

We introduce the Gamma-Exponential Process (GEP), a prior over a large family ofcontinuous time stochastic processes. A hierarchical version of this prior (HGEP; the Hierarchical GEP) yields a useful model for analyzing complex time series. Models based on HGEPs display many attractive properties: conjugacy, exchangeability and closed-form predictive distribution for the waiting times, and exact Gibbs updates for the time scale parameters. After establishing these properties, weshow how posterior inference can be carried efficiently using Particle MCMC methods [1]. This yields a MCMC algorithm that can resample entire sequences atomicallywhile avoiding the complications of introducing slice and stick auxiliary variables of the beam sampler [2]. We applied our model to the problem of estimating the disease progression in multiple sclerosis [3], and to RNA evolutionary modeling[4]. In both domains, we found that our model outperformed the standard rate matrix estimation approach.

Bayesian Markov Blanket Estimation Machine Learning

This paper considers a Bayesian view for estimating a sub-network in a Markov random field. The sub-network corresponds to the Markov blanket of a set of query variables, where the set of potential neighbours here is big. We factorize the posterior such that the Markov blanket is conditionally independent of the network of the potential neighbours. By exploiting this blockwise decoupling, we derive analytic expressions for posterior conditionals. Subsequently, we develop an inference scheme which makes use of the factorization. As a result, estimation of a sub-network is possible without inferring an entire network. Since the resulting Gibbs sampler scales linearly with the number of variables, it can handle relatively large neighbourhoods. The proposed scheme results in faster convergence and superior mixing of the Markov chain than existing Bayesian network estimation techniques.

Bayesian inference in spiking neurons

Neural Information Processing Systems

We propose a new interpretation of spiking neurons as Bayesian integrators accumulatingevidence over time about events in the external world or the body, and communicating to other neurons their certainties about these events. In this model, spikes signal the occurrence of new information, i.e.what cannot be predicted from the past activity. As a result, firing statistics are close to Poisson, albeit providing a deterministic representation ofprobabilities. We proceed to develop a theory of Bayesian inference in spiking neural networks, recurrent interactions implementing avariant of belief propagation. Many perceptual and motor tasks performed by the central nervous system are probabilistic, andcan be described in a Bayesian framework [4, 3].