Advancements in medical technology have created numerous large datasets including many features. Usually, all captured features are not necessary, and there are redundant and irrelevant features, which reduce the performance of algorithms. To tackle this challenge, many metaheuristic algorithms are used to select effective features. However, most of them are not effective and scalable enough to select effective features from large medical datasets as well as small ones. Therefore, in this paper, a binary moth-flame optimization (B-MFO) is proposed to select effective features from small and large medical datasets. Three categories of B-MFO were developed using S-shaped, V-shaped, and U-shaped transfer functions to convert the canonical MFO from continuous to binary. These categories of B-MFO were evaluated on seven medical datasets and the results were compared with four well-known binary metaheuristic optimization algorithms: BPSO, bGWO, BDA, and BSSA. In addition, the convergence behavior of the B-MFO and comparative algorithms were assessed, and the results were statistically analyzed using the Friedman test. The experimental results demonstrate a superior performance of B-MFO in solving the feature selection problem for different medical datasets compared to other comparative algorithms.
- Binary metaheuristic algorithms
- Feature selection
- Medical datasets
- Swarm intelligence algorithms
- Transfer function