Associate Professor Claudia Mello-Thoms

BSc, MS, PhD (joint) Rutgers University and The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey
Associate Professor, Medical Radiation Sciences
Adjunct Professor, Department of Biomedical Informatics, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, USA

C43M - M Block Cumberland Campus
The University of Sydney

Telephone 9351 9259

Website MIOPeG

Biographical details

Claudia received her joint PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Rutgers University and The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (USA) in 2001. While carrying out her PhD, she also worked as a research assistant at the Pendergrass laboratories, Department of Radiology, University of Pennsylvania, where she completed her first post-doctoral training. In September 2001 she moved to the Department of Radiology, University of Pittsburgh, as a research associate, and in January 2003 she was promoted to Research Assistant Professor. She was awarded the “best clinical science paper” in 2003 by the Radiological Society of North America for the publication of part of her thesis in Academic Radiology in 2002. In 2006 she joined the Department of Biomedical Informatics at the University of Pittsburgh, and this became her second appointment. She became a consultant to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Radiation Safety Devices committee, in 2007, and in 2008 she was promoted to Assistant Professor of Radiology and Biomedical Informatics at the same University. In 2011 she also became a consultant to the Hematology and Pathology Devices committee at the FDA. In 2013 she moved to the University of Sydney, to Discipline of Medical Radiation Sciences. She is a reviewer for 15 medical and engineering journals, as well as for several grant funding agencies, including the National Institutes of Health (NIH) - USA, Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (Flanders Foundation, The Netherlands) and Cancer Research – UK.

Research interests

  • Medical Image Perception
  • Visual Search
  • Cognitive Modeling
  • Image Interpretation

Research in my group is interdisciplinary and built around the key themes of visual search and image perception. Our research group aims to understand the underlying nature of medical image interpretation, model why errors occur and devise strategies to minimize their occurrence. To do so, we study the interaction between the human reader (regardless of whether this reader is a radiologist, pathologist, dermatologist, etc) and the medical image. Most of our research focuses on cancer, particularly breast and lung cancer, but recently we have also started to investigate diagnostic process in the reading of histopathology and cytology digital slides.

Associate Professor Mello-Thoms is a member of the Image optimisation and perception group MIOPeG

Associations

Member of the Medical Image Perception Society

Themes

Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences

Selected grants

2014

  • An expert international partnership in BREAST and breast cancer performance analysis.; Lewis S, Brennan P, Mello-Thoms C, Abbey C, Maidment A; DVC International/IPDF Grant.

2013

  • A mobile imaging platform to further transform breast cancer imaging research in NSW initiated by BREAST; Brennan P, Mello-Thoms C, Yi X, Grieve S, McEntee M; Cancer Institute New South Wales/Equipment Grant.

2009

  • MammoTutor: An Internet-based computer tutoring system to teach general radiologists the early signs of breast cancer; Mello-Thoms C; AHRQ/Project grant.
  • Perception and Inter-Observer Variability in Mammography (incorrect); Mello-Thoms C; NIH/NCI/Project grant.
  • Computational methods for personalized and adaptive cognitive training; Mello-Thoms C, Crowley R; NIH/NLM/Project grant.

2008

  • New methods for analysis of eye-tracking data for medical image perception research; Mello-Thoms C, Chakraborty D; NIH/NIBIB/Project grant.

2005

  • Observer studies involving search: modeling and analysis; Mello-Thoms C, Chakraborty D; NIH/NIBIB/Project grant.

2004

  • Perception and Inter-Observer Variability in Mammography; Mello-Thoms C; NIH/NCI/Project grant.

Selected publications

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Book Chapters

  • Nodine, C., Mello-Thoms, C. (2010). The role of expertise in radiologic image interpretation. In Samei, Ehsan; Krupinski, Elizabeth (Eds.), Handbook of Medical Image Perception and Techniques, (pp. 139-156). USA: Cambridge University Press.
  • Mello-Thoms, C., Gannot, M., Sumkin, J., Hakim, C., Britton, C., Wallace, L., Hardesty, L. (2008). Different Search Patterns and Similar Decision Outcomes: How Can Experts Agree in the Decisions They Make When Reading Digital Mammograms? In Elizabeth A. Krupinski (Eds.), Digital Mammography, (pp. 212-219). United States: Springer Lecture Notes in Computer Science.

Journals

  • Lewis, S., Mello-Thoms, C., Brennan, P., Lee, W., Tan, A., McEntee, M., Evanoff, M., Pietrzyk, M., Reed, W. (2014). Assessing the effect of a true-positive recall case in screening mammography: does perceptual priming alter radiologists’ performance? British Journal of Radiology, 87(20140029). [More Information]
  • Al Mousa, D., Ryan, E., Mello-Thoms, C., Brennan, P. (2014). What effect does mammographic breast density have on lesion detection in digital mammography? Clinical Radiology, In press.
  • Crowley, R., Legowski, E., Medvedeva, O., Reitmeyer, K., Tseytlin, E., Castine, M., Jukic, D., Mello-Thoms, C. (2013). Automated detection of heuristics and biases among pathologists in a computer-based system. Advances in Health Sciences Education, 18(3), 343-363. [More Information]
  • Randell, R., Ruddle, R., Mello-Thoms, C., Rhys, T., Quirke, P., Treanor, D. (2013). Virtual reality microscope versus conventional microscope regarding time to diagnosis: an experimental study. Histopathology, 62(2), 351-358. [More Information]
  • Chakraborty, D., Yoon, H., Mello-Thoms, C. (2012). Application of threshold-bias independent analysis to eyetracking and FROC data. Academic Radiology, 19(12), 1474-1483. [More Information]
  • Mello-Thoms, C., Mello, C., Medvedeva, O., Castine, M., Legowski, E., Gardner, G., Tseytlin, E., Crowley, R. (2012). Perceptual Analysis of the Reading of Dermatopathology Virtual Slides by Pathology Residents. Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, 136(5), 551-562. [More Information]
  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2012). Review of Informatics in Medical Imaging by Kagadis GC, Langer SG (Editors). Journal of Pathology Informatics, 3(7).
  • Lewis, Z., Mello-Thoms, C., Gadabu, O., Gillespie, E., Douglas, G., Crowley, R. (2011). The feasibility of automating audit and feedback for ART guideline adherence in Malawi. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, 18(6), 868-874. [More Information]
  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2011). The pathologist is not a lonely sailor on the sea. Journal of Pathology Informatics, 2(12).
  • Kundel, H., Nodine, C., Krupinski, E., Mello-Thoms, C. (2008). Using gaze-tracking data and mixture distribution analysis to support a holistic model for the detection of cancers on mammograms. Academic Radiology, 15(7), 881-886. [More Information]
  • Zheng, B., Mello-Thoms, C., Wang, X., Abrams, G., Sumkin, J., Chough, D., Ganott, M., Lu, A., Gur, D. (2007). Interactive computer-aided diagnosis of breast masses: computerized selection of visually similar image sets from a reference library. Academic Radiology, 14(8), 917-927.
  • Chakraborty, D., Yoon, H., Mello-Thoms, C. (2007). Spatial localization accuracy of radiologists in free-response studies: inferring perceptual FROC curves from mark-rating data. Academic Radiology, 14(1), 4-18.

Conferences

  • Pietrzyk, M., McEntee, M., Evanoff, M., Brennan, P., Mello-Thoms, C. (2014). Direction of an initial saccade depends on radiological expertise. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Soh, B., Lee, W., Mello-Thoms, C., Tapia, K., Ryan, J., Hung, W., Thompson, G., Heard, R., Brennan, P. (2014). Does sensitivity measured from screening test-sets predict clinical performance? SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Al Mousa, D., Brennan, P., Ryan, E., Lee, W., Pietrzyk, M., Reed, W., Alakhras, M., Li, Y., Mello-Thoms, C. (2014). Effect of mammographic breast density on radiologists' visual search pattern. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Alakhras, M., Mello-Thoms, C., Rickard, M., Bourne, R., Brennan, P. (2014). Efficacy of digital breast tomosynthesis for breast cancer diagnosis. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Mello-Thoms, C., Trieu, P., Brennan, P. (2014). Going on with false beliefs: What if satisfaction of search was really suppression of recognition? SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Lewis, S., Mello-Thoms, C., Brennan, P., Cumming, S., Keane, K., MacKay, S. (2014). Investigating links between emotional intelligence and observer performance by radiologists in mammography. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Venjakob, A., Mello-Thoms, C., Marnitz, T. (2014). Preference and performance regarding different image sizes when reading cranial CT. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications. [More Information]
  • Robinson, J., Brennan, P., Mello-Thoms, C., Pietrzyk, M., Lewis, S. (2014). The patterns of false positive lesions for chest radiography observer performance: insights into errors and locations. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Robinson, J., Brennan, P., McEntee, M., Pietrzyk, M., Mello-Thoms, C., Lewis, S. (2013). Identification of lung nodules: identifying the influence of perceptual priming. Medical Imaging Perception Society XV Conference (MIPS 2013), Washington DC: Medical Imaging Perception Society.
  • Mello-Thoms, C., Legowski, E., Tseytlin, E. (2013). Is grandma like a lichen planus? The problem of image perception and knowledge retention in pathology. Medical Imaging 2013: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, United States: SPIE Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.
  • Reed, W., Pietrzyk, M., Mello-Thoms, C., Tan, A., McEntee, M., Lee, W., Brennan, P. (2013). The impact of the insertion of obvious cases on subsequent breast lesion detection in screening mammography. Medical Imaging Perception Society XV Conference (MIPS 2013), Washington DC: Medical Imaging Perception Society.
  • Elze, M., Taylor-Phillips, S., Mello-Thoms, C., Krupinski, E., Gale, A., Clarke, A. (2013). The variation of radiologists' performance over the course of a reading session. Medical Imaging 2013: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, United States: SPIE Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.
  • Mello-Thoms, C., Mello, C., Medvedeva, O., Tseytlin, E., Crowley, R. (2011). Characterizing virtual slide exploration through use of 'search maps'. SPIE Medical Imaging: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment 2011, Florida: SPIE Proceedings. [More Information]
  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2010). Visual search characteristics in mammogram reading: FFDM x SFM. SPIE Medical Imaging: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment 2010, San Diego, California, USA: SPIE Proceedings. [More Information]
  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2009). The 'holistic grail': Possible implications of an initial mistake in the reading of digital mammograms. SPIE Medical Imaging: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment 2009, Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA: SPIE Proceedings. [More Information]
  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2008). How much agreement is there in the visual search strategy of experts reading mammograms? SPIE Medical Imaging: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment 2008, San Diego, California, USA: SPIE Proceedings. [More Information]

2014

  • Lewis, S., Mello-Thoms, C., Brennan, P., Lee, W., Tan, A., McEntee, M., Evanoff, M., Pietrzyk, M., Reed, W. (2014). Assessing the effect of a true-positive recall case in screening mammography: does perceptual priming alter radiologists’ performance? British Journal of Radiology, 87(20140029). [More Information]
  • Pietrzyk, M., McEntee, M., Evanoff, M., Brennan, P., Mello-Thoms, C. (2014). Direction of an initial saccade depends on radiological expertise. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Soh, B., Lee, W., Mello-Thoms, C., Tapia, K., Ryan, J., Hung, W., Thompson, G., Heard, R., Brennan, P. (2014). Does sensitivity measured from screening test-sets predict clinical performance? SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Al Mousa, D., Brennan, P., Ryan, E., Lee, W., Pietrzyk, M., Reed, W., Alakhras, M., Li, Y., Mello-Thoms, C. (2014). Effect of mammographic breast density on radiologists' visual search pattern. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Alakhras, M., Mello-Thoms, C., Rickard, M., Bourne, R., Brennan, P. (2014). Efficacy of digital breast tomosynthesis for breast cancer diagnosis. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Mello-Thoms, C., Trieu, P., Brennan, P. (2014). Going on with false beliefs: What if satisfaction of search was really suppression of recognition? SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Lewis, S., Mello-Thoms, C., Brennan, P., Cumming, S., Keane, K., MacKay, S. (2014). Investigating links between emotional intelligence and observer performance by radiologists in mammography. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Venjakob, A., Mello-Thoms, C., Marnitz, T. (2014). Preference and performance regarding different image sizes when reading cranial CT. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications. [More Information]
  • Robinson, J., Brennan, P., Mello-Thoms, C., Pietrzyk, M., Lewis, S. (2014). The patterns of false positive lesions for chest radiography observer performance: insights into errors and locations. SPIE Medical Imaging 2014: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, WA: SPIE Publications.
  • Al Mousa, D., Ryan, E., Mello-Thoms, C., Brennan, P. (2014). What effect does mammographic breast density have on lesion detection in digital mammography? Clinical Radiology, In press.

2013

  • Crowley, R., Legowski, E., Medvedeva, O., Reitmeyer, K., Tseytlin, E., Castine, M., Jukic, D., Mello-Thoms, C. (2013). Automated detection of heuristics and biases among pathologists in a computer-based system. Advances in Health Sciences Education, 18(3), 343-363. [More Information]
  • Robinson, J., Brennan, P., McEntee, M., Pietrzyk, M., Mello-Thoms, C., Lewis, S. (2013). Identification of lung nodules: identifying the influence of perceptual priming. Medical Imaging Perception Society XV Conference (MIPS 2013), Washington DC: Medical Imaging Perception Society.
  • Mello-Thoms, C., Legowski, E., Tseytlin, E. (2013). Is grandma like a lichen planus? The problem of image perception and knowledge retention in pathology. Medical Imaging 2013: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, United States: SPIE Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.
  • Reed, W., Pietrzyk, M., Mello-Thoms, C., Tan, A., McEntee, M., Lee, W., Brennan, P. (2013). The impact of the insertion of obvious cases on subsequent breast lesion detection in screening mammography. Medical Imaging Perception Society XV Conference (MIPS 2013), Washington DC: Medical Imaging Perception Society.
  • Elze, M., Taylor-Phillips, S., Mello-Thoms, C., Krupinski, E., Gale, A., Clarke, A. (2013). The variation of radiologists' performance over the course of a reading session. Medical Imaging 2013: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, Bellingham, United States: SPIE Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.
  • Randell, R., Ruddle, R., Mello-Thoms, C., Rhys, T., Quirke, P., Treanor, D. (2013). Virtual reality microscope versus conventional microscope regarding time to diagnosis: an experimental study. Histopathology, 62(2), 351-358. [More Information]

2012

  • Chakraborty, D., Yoon, H., Mello-Thoms, C. (2012). Application of threshold-bias independent analysis to eyetracking and FROC data. Academic Radiology, 19(12), 1474-1483. [More Information]
  • Mello-Thoms, C., Mello, C., Medvedeva, O., Castine, M., Legowski, E., Gardner, G., Tseytlin, E., Crowley, R. (2012). Perceptual Analysis of the Reading of Dermatopathology Virtual Slides by Pathology Residents. Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, 136(5), 551-562. [More Information]
  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2012). Review of Informatics in Medical Imaging by Kagadis GC, Langer SG (Editors). Journal of Pathology Informatics, 3(7).

2011

  • Mello-Thoms, C., Mello, C., Medvedeva, O., Tseytlin, E., Crowley, R. (2011). Characterizing virtual slide exploration through use of 'search maps'. SPIE Medical Imaging: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment 2011, Florida: SPIE Proceedings. [More Information]
  • Lewis, Z., Mello-Thoms, C., Gadabu, O., Gillespie, E., Douglas, G., Crowley, R. (2011). The feasibility of automating audit and feedback for ART guideline adherence in Malawi. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, 18(6), 868-874. [More Information]
  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2011). The pathologist is not a lonely sailor on the sea. Journal of Pathology Informatics, 2(12).

2010

  • Nodine, C., Mello-Thoms, C. (2010). The role of expertise in radiologic image interpretation. In Samei, Ehsan; Krupinski, Elizabeth (Eds.), Handbook of Medical Image Perception and Techniques, (pp. 139-156). USA: Cambridge University Press.
  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2010). Visual search characteristics in mammogram reading: FFDM x SFM. SPIE Medical Imaging: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment 2010, San Diego, California, USA: SPIE Proceedings. [More Information]

2009

  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2009). The 'holistic grail': Possible implications of an initial mistake in the reading of digital mammograms. SPIE Medical Imaging: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment 2009, Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA: SPIE Proceedings. [More Information]

2008

  • Mello-Thoms, C., Gannot, M., Sumkin, J., Hakim, C., Britton, C., Wallace, L., Hardesty, L. (2008). Different Search Patterns and Similar Decision Outcomes: How Can Experts Agree in the Decisions They Make When Reading Digital Mammograms? In Elizabeth A. Krupinski (Eds.), Digital Mammography, (pp. 212-219). United States: Springer Lecture Notes in Computer Science.
  • Mello-Thoms, C. (2008). How much agreement is there in the visual search strategy of experts reading mammograms? SPIE Medical Imaging: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment 2008, San Diego, California, USA: SPIE Proceedings. [More Information]
  • Kundel, H., Nodine, C., Krupinski, E., Mello-Thoms, C. (2008). Using gaze-tracking data and mixture distribution analysis to support a holistic model for the detection of cancers on mammograms. Academic Radiology, 15(7), 881-886. [More Information]

2007

  • Zheng, B., Mello-Thoms, C., Wang, X., Abrams, G., Sumkin, J., Chough, D., Ganott, M., Lu, A., Gur, D. (2007). Interactive computer-aided diagnosis of breast masses: computerized selection of visually similar image sets from a reference library. Academic Radiology, 14(8), 917-927.
  • Chakraborty, D., Yoon, H., Mello-Thoms, C. (2007). Spatial localization accuracy of radiologists in free-response studies: inferring perceptual FROC curves from mark-rating data. Academic Radiology, 14(1), 4-18.

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