Objective. Limited-angle computed tomography (CT) presents a challenge due to its ill-posed nature. In such scenarios, analytical reconstruction methods often exhibit severe artifacts. To tackle this inverse problem, several supervised deep learning-based approaches have been proposed. However, they are constrained by limitations such as generalization issue and the difficulty of acquiring a large amount of paired CT images. Approach. In this work, we propose an iterative neural reconstruction framework designed for limited-angle CT. By leveraging a coordinate-based neural representation, we formulate tomographic reconstruction as a convex optimization problem involving a deep neural network. We then employ differentiable projection layer to optimize this network by minimizing the discrepancy between the predicted and measured projection data. In addition, we introduce a prior-based weight initialization method to ensure the network starts optimization with an informed initial guess. This strategic initialization significantly improves the quality of iterative reconstruction by stabilizing the divergent behavior in ill-posed neural fields. Our method operates in a self-supervised manner, thereby eliminating the need for extensive data. Main results. The proposed method outperforms other iterative and learning-based methods. Experimental results on XCAT and Mayo Clinic datasets demonstrate the effectiveness of our approach in restoring anatomical features as well as structures. This finding was substantiated by visual inspections and quantitative evaluations using NRMSE, PSNR, and SSIM. Moreover, we conduct a comprehensive investigation into the divergent behavior of iterative neural reconstruction, thus revealing its suboptimal convergence when starting from scratch. In contrast, our method consistently produced accurate images by incorporating an initial estimate as informed initialization. Significance. This work showcases the feasibility to reconstruct high-fidelity CT images from limited-angle x-ray projections. The proposed methodology introduces a novel data-free approach to enhance medical imaging, holding promise across various clinical applications.

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