Learning Permutation Invariant Representations Using Memory Networks

Shivam Kalra, Mohammed Adnan, Graham Taylor, H. R. Tizhoosh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Many real-world tasks such as classification of digital histopathology images and 3D object detection involve learning from a set of instances. In these cases, only a group of instances or a set, collectively, contains meaningful information and therefore only the sets have labels, and not individual data instances. In this work, we present a permutation invariant neural network called Memory-based Exchangeable Model (MEM) for learning universal set functions. The MEM model consists of memory units that embed an input sequence to high-level features enabling it to learn inter-dependencies among instances through a self-attention mechanism. We evaluated the learning ability of MEM on various toy datasets, point cloud classification, and classification of whole slide images (WSIs) into two subtypes of the lung cancer—Lung Adenocarcinoma, and Lung Squamous Cell Carcinoma. We systematically extracted patches from WSIs of the lung, downloaded from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) dataset, the largest public repository of WSIs, achieving a competitive accuracy of 84.84% for classification of two sub-types of lung cancer. The results on other datasets are promising as well, and demonstrate the efficacy of our model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationComputer Vision – ECCV 2020 - 16th European Conference, Proceedings
EditorsAndrea Vedaldi, Horst Bischof, Thomas Brox, Jan-Michael Frahm
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)9783030585259
StatePublished - 2020
Event16th European Conference on Computer Vision, ECCV 2020 - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: Aug 23 2020Aug 28 2020

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume12374 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference16th European Conference on Computer Vision, ECCV 2020
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • Medical images
  • Multi Instance Learning
  • Permutation invariant models
  • Whole slide image classification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computer Science(all)


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