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Assoc Prof Zhong Liang

Assoc Prof Zhong Liang

​PHD, BE, BEco 

National Heart Centre Singapore

Academic Appointments

  • Associate Professor SingHealth Duke-NUS Cardiovascular Sciences Academic Clinical Programme


Associate Professor Zhong is a Principal Investigator at NHRIS/NHCS and Associate Professor at Duke-NUS Medical School. He is leading cardiovascular engineering and technologies theme and technical lead of cardiovascular system AI core at NHRIS. His research interests include bioengineering, cardiovascular imaging, mechanics and physiology, multiscale computational modelling and AI, and development of novel technology towards applications in clinical research. Professor Zhong is leading several clinical studies (e.g. CT based FFR, INITIATE, ECONOMY, APOLLO) in congenital heart disease, pulmonary artery disease and coronary artery disease.

He has co-authored 1 book “computational and mathematical methods in cardiovascular physiology”, 18 book chapters, 130 referred journal papers, and holds 9 granted patents. He has served as a regular reviewer and panel committee member on NMRC, committee members in EMBS and ISMRM. He has been awarded more than 12 million SGD as PI in research grant funding from NMRC, BMRC, NRF and A*STAR. He is serving as member of the Editorial Boards of Frontier in Physiology, Frontier in Cardiovascular Medicine, Journal of Mechanics in Medicine and Biology, and other journals, as well as reviewers for more than 10 journals. He has received several awards from Singapore Cardiac Society (2011 and 2012), Asean Federation of Cardiology (2012), and Sejong Medical Award from Asia-Pacific Pediatric Cardiac Society (2012) and GCEO excellent research award (2021).


  • ​Advanced Certificate in Technopreneurship, Singapore Management University Academy, 2019
  • PhD, Nanyang Technolgoical University, 2005
  • BEng, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, 1999
  • BEco, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, 1999

Professional Appointments and Committee Memberships

  • Principal Investigator, National Heart Research Institute Singapore (NHRIS), National Heart Centre Singapore
  • Associate Professor, SingHealth Duke-NUS Cardiovascular Sciences Academic Clinical Programme (CVS ACP), Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore
  • Associate Professor, Signature Research Programme in Cardiovascular & Metabolic Disorders (CVMD), Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore
  • Cardiovascular Engineering and Technologies Theme Lead, NHRIS
  • Cardiovascular System Artificial Intelligence Core, Technical Lead, NHRIS 
  • International Technical Committee, Cardiovascular and Respiratory Theme, IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology 
  • EXCO Committee Member, IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology, Singapore Chapter
  • EXCO Committee Member, International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Singapore Chapter


  • GCEO outstanding research award, SingHealth Excellent Award 2021 (2021)
  • “Huanghe Bei” Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition, Third Prize, China (2015)
  • Singhealth Publish Award (Medical Research), SingHealth, Singapore (2014)
  • Best Publication Award, Gold, Academy of Medicine, Singapore (2013)
  • Sejong Medical Award from Asia-Pacific Paediatric Cardiac Society (2012)
  • Young Investigator Award, First Prize, ASEAN Federation of College in Cardiology (2012)
  • Young Investigator Award, First Prize, Singapore Cardiac Society (2012)
  • Young Investigator Award, First Prize, Singapore Cardiac Society (2011)
  • Best Abstract Award, Singapore Cardiac Society (2011)

Research Interests

  • Develop AI platform for CT in coronary artery disease 
  • Coronary circulation and physiology assessment in coronary artery disease 
  • 4D flow MRI for congenital heart disease 
  • Integrated hemodynamics and mechanics and metabolomics in pulmonary artery hypertension 
  • Imaging markers and biomarkers for cardiac aging 
  • Myocardial dynamics flow in diabetes mellitus 
  • Deep learning for microvascular obstruction detection post myocardial infarction


  1. Zhao X, Hu LW, Leng S, Tan RS, Chai P, Bryant J, Teo L, Fortier M, Yeo TJ, Ouyang RZ, Allen J, Hughes M, Garg P, Zhang S, van der Geest R, Yip J, Tan TH, Tan JL, Zhong YM, Zhong L. Ventricular flow analysis and its association with exertional capability in repaired tetralogy of Fallot: 4D flow cardiovascular magnetic resonance study. Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance; 2022:24:4.
  2. Juffermans JF, Minderhoud SCS, Wittgren J, Kilburg A, Ese A, Fidock B, Zheng YC, Zhang JM, Blanken C, Lamb H, Goeman JJ, Carlsson M, Zhao S, Panken RN, Ooij PV, Zhong L, Chen X, Garg P, Emrich T, Hirsch A, Toger J, Westenberg JJM. Multicenter consistency assessment of valvular flow quantification with automated valve tracking in 4D Flow MRI. JACC Cardiovascular Imaging 2021; Jul;14(7):1354-1366.
  3. Chioh FWJ, Young BE, Fong SW, Wu KX, Siau A, Krishnan S, Teo LLY, Gao F, Tan RS, Zhong L, Koh AS, Renia L, Ng LFP, Lye DC, Cheung C. Convalescent COVID-19 patients are susceptible to endothelial dysfunction due to persistent immune activation. eLife 2021;10:e64909.
  4. Leng S, Tan RS, Guo JJ, Chai P, Zhang GC, Teo L, Ruan W, Yeo TJ, Zhao XD, Allen JC, Tan JL, Yip JW, Chen Y, Zhong L. Cardiovascular magnetic resonance assessed fast global longitudinal strain parameters add diagnostic and prognostic insights in right ventricular volume and pressure overloading. Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance 2021; 23(1):38.
  5. Benjamin Fidock, Gareth Archer, Natasha Barker, Alaa Elhawaz, Abdallah Almohammad, Alexander Rothman, David Hose, Ian Hall, Ever Grech, Norman Briffa, Nigel Lewis, Rob van der Geest, Jun-Mei Zhang, Zhong L, Andrew Swift, Jim Wild, Estefania De Garate, Chiara Bucciarelli-Ducci, Jeroen Bax, Sven Plein, Saul Myerson, and Pankaj Garg. Standard and emerging CMR methods for mitral regurgitation quantification: inter-method validation and reproducibility study. International Journal of Cardiology 2021; 331:316-321.
  6. Kovalik JP, Zhao XD, Gao F, Leng S, Chow V, Chew H, Teo LY, Tan RS, Ewe SH, Tan HC, Ning WH, Ching JH, Keng BMH, Koh WP, Zhong L, Koh AS. Amino acid differences between diabetic older adults and non-diabetic older adults and their association with cardiovascular function. Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology 2021; 58:63-71.
  7. Leng S, Guo JJ, Tan RS, Chai P, Teo LLS, Fortier MV, Gong C, Zhao XD, Allen JC, Ong CC, Ruan W, Koh AS, Tan TH, Yip JW, Tan JL, Chen YC, Zhong L. Age- and sex-specific changes in CMR feature tracking-based right atrial and ventricular functional parameters in healthy Asians. Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine 2021;8:664431.
  8. Gao F, Kovalik JP, Zhao XD, Chow V, Chew H, Teo LLY, Tan RS, Leng S, Ewe SH, Tan HC, Tan TY, Lee YS, Ching CH, Keng BMH, Zhong L, Koh WP, Koh AS. Exacerbation of cardiovascular ageing by diabetes mellitus and its association with acyl-carnitines. Aging 2021;13(11):14785-14805.
  9. Zhao X, Tan RS, Garg P, Chai P, Leng S, Bryant J, Teo LLS, Ong CC, der Geest RJ, Allen JC, Yip JW, Tan JL, Plein S, Westenberg J, Zhong L. Impact of age, sex and ethnicity on intra-cardiac flow components and left ventricular kinetic energy derived from 4D flow CMR. International Journal of Cardiology 2021; 336:105-112.
  10. Ouyang R, Leng S, Sun A, Wang Q, Hu L, Zhao X, Yan Q, Tan RS, Zhong L*, Zhong YM. Detection of persistent systolic and diastolic abnormalities in aysmpomatic pediatric repaired tetralogy of Fallot patients with preserved ejection fraction: A CMR feature tracking study. European Radiology 2021 Aug 3; 31(8):6156-6168.
  11. Chandola G, Zhang JM, Tan RS, Chai P, Toe LLS, Allen JS, Huang WM, Fam JM, Chin CY, Kassab GS, Low AF, Tan SY, Chua T, Lim ST, Zhong L. Computed tomography coronary angiography and computational fluid dynamics based fractional flow reserve before and after percutaneous coronary intervention. Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology 2021 Sep;9:739667.
  12. Mauger C, Govil S, Chabiniok R, Gibert K, Hegde S, Hussain T, McCulloch AD, Occleshaw OJ, Omens J, Perry JC, Pushparajah K, Suinesiaputra A, Zhong L, Young A. Right-left ventricular shape variations in Tetralogy of Fallot: associations with pulmonary regurgitation. Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance 2021; 23:105.
  13. Zhang JM, Low R, Tan RS, Logen, Chai P, Teo LLS, Ong CC, Allen J, Fam JM, Low AF, Chua T, Tan SY, Lim ST, Zhong L. Diagnostic performance of fractional flow reserve from CT coronary angiography and analytical method. Frontier in Cardiovascular Medicine 2021;8: 739633.
  14. Xu XX, Fam JM, Low A, Tan RS, Chai P, Leng S, Allen J, Teo L, Ong CC, Chan M, Huang T, Wu Q, Lim ST, Zhong L. Sex differences in assessing stenosis severity between physician visual assessment and quantitative coronary angiography. International Journal of Cardiology 2021 Dec 2021.
  15. Garg P, Swift A, Zhong L, Carlhall CJ, Ebbers T, Westenberg J, Hope M, Bucciarelli-Ducci C, Bax JJ, Myerson S. Mitral valve regurgitation assessment by cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging. Nature Reviews Cardiology 2020;17(5):298-312.
  16. Lee SY, Burns S, Ng KKC, Stensel DJ, Zhong L, Tan F, Chia KL, Fam KD, Yap MC, Yeo KP, Yap EP, Lim CL. Pulse wave velocity is associated with increased plasma oxLDL in ageing but not with FGF21 and habitual exercise. Antioxidants 2020;9(3):E221.
  17. Leng S, Ge H, He J, Kong L, Tan RS, Zhao XD, Allen JC, Hansenloy DJ, Zhong L, Pu J. Long-term prognostic value of cardiac MRI left atrial strain in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction. Radiology 2020; 296(2):299-309.
  18. Zhang JM, Chandola G, Tan RS, Chai P, Teo LLS, Low R, Allen J, Huang W, Fam JM, Chin CY, Wong A, Low AF, Kassab G, Chua T, Tan SY, Lim ST, Zhong L. Quantification of effects of mean blood pressure and left ventricular mass on noninvasive fast fractional flow reserve. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 2020; 391(2):H360-H369.
  19. Zhao XD, Teo SK, Zhong L, Leng S, Zhang JM, Low R, Allen J, Koh AS, Tan JL, Su Y, Tan RS. Reference ranges for left ventricular curvedness and curvedness-based functional indices using cardiovascular magnetic resonance in healthy Asian subjects. Scientific Report 2020; 10:8465.
  20. Zhong L, Schrauben EM, Garcia J, Uribe S, Grieve SM, Eibaz MM, Barker AJ, Geiger J, Nordmeyer S, Marsden A, Carlsson M, Tan RS, Garg P, Westenberg JJM, Markl M, Ebbers T. Intracardiac 4D flow MRI in congenital heart disease: recommendations on behalf of the ISMRM Flow & Motion Study Group. J Magn Reson Imaging 2019; 50:677-681.
  21. Finsberg H, Xi C, Zhao X, Tan JL, Genet M, Sundnes J, Lee C, Zhong L, Wall ST. Computational quantification of patient-specific changes in ventricular dynamics associated with pulmonary hypertension. Am J Physiol Heart Circulation Physiol 2019;317(6):H1363-H1375.  
  22. Leng S, Dong Y, Wu Y, Zhao XD, Ruan W, Zhang GC, Allen JC, Koh AS, Tan RS, Yip J, Tan JL, Chen Y, Zhong L. Impaired CMR-derived rapid semi-automated right atrial longitudinal strain is associated with decompensated hemodynamics in pulmonary arterial hypertension. Circulation: Cardiovascular Imaging 2019; 12;e008582.
  23. Leng S, Tan RS, Zhao XD, Koh A, Zhong L. Validation of rapid semi-automated method to assess left atrial longitudinal phasic strains on cine cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging. Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance 2018; 20(1):71
  24. Koh A, Leng S, Tan RS, Gao F, Kovalik JP, Ching J, Yuan JM, Koh WP, Zhong L. Dissecting clinical and metabolomics associations of left atrial phasic function by cardiac magnetic resonance feature tracking. Scientific Report 2018; 8(1):8138.
  25. Zhong L, Zhang JM, Su BY, Tan RS, Allen J, Kassab G. Application of patient-specific computational fluid dynamics in coronary and intra-cardiac flow simulations: challenges and opportunities.  Frontier in Physiology 2018;9:742.
  26. Zhang JM, Shuang D, Baskaran L, Wu W, Teo SK, Huang W, Gobeawan L, Allen JC,  Tan RS, Su X, Ismail NB, Wan M, Su B, Zou H, Low R, Zhao XD, Chi Y, Zhou J, Su Y, Lomarda AM, Chin CY, Fam JM, Keng FYJ, Wong ASL, Tan JWC, Yeo KK, Wong PEH,  Chin CT, Ho KW, Yap J, Kassab GS, Chua T, Koh TH, Tan SY, Lim ST, Zhong L. Advanced analyses of computed tomography coronary angiography can help discriminate ischemic lesions. International Journal of Cardiology; 2018:267:208-214.
  27. Zou H, Xi C, Zhao XD, Koh A, Gao F, Su Y, Tan RS, Allen J, Lee LC, Genet M, Zhong L. quantification of biventricular strains in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction patients using hyperelastic warping method. Front Physiol 2018;9:1295.
  28. Choy JS, Leng S, Acevedo-Bolton G, Shual S, Fu L, Guo X, Zhong L, Guccione JM, Kassab GS. Efficacy of intramyocardial injection of Algisyl-LVR for the treatment of ischemic heart failure in swine. International Journal of Cardiology; 2018;255:129-135.
  29. Leng S, Zhang S, Jiang M, Zhao X, Wu R, Allen J, He B, Tan RS, Zhong L. Imaging 4D morphology and dynamics of mitral annulus in humans using cardiac cine MR feature tracking. Sci Rep 2018;8(1):81.
  30. Tan XW, Zheng QS, Shi LM, Gao F, Allen J, Coenen A, Baumann S, Joseph Schoepf U, Kassab G, Lim ST, Wong A, Tan J, Yeo KK, Chi CT, Ho KW, Tan SY, Chua TSJ, Chan ESY, Tan RS, Zhong L. Combined diagnostic performance of coronary computed tomography angiography and computed tomography derived fractional flow reserve for the evaluation of myocardial ischemia: A meta-analysis. International Journal of Cardiology 2017;236:100-106.
  31. Leng S, Jiang M, Zhao XD, Allen JC, Kassab G, Ouyang RZ, Tan JL, He B, Tan RS, Zhong L. Three-dimensional tricuspid annular motion analysis from cardiac magnetic resonance feature tracking. Ann Biomed Eng 2016; 44(12):3522-3538.
  32. Leng S, Zhao XD, Huang FQ, Wong JI, Su BY, Allen JC, Kassab G, Tan RS, Zhong L. Automated quantitative assessment of cardiovascular magnetic resonance derived atrioventricular junction velocities. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 2015; 309(11):H1923-H1935.
  33. Zhong L, Huang FQ, Tan LK, John Allen, Ding ZP, Kassab G, Tan RS. The effects of age and gender on ventricular systolic function in healthy volunteers. Int J Cardiol 2014;172(1):e102-e105.
  34. Lee LC, Wenk JF, Zhong L, Klepach D, Zhang ZH, Ge L, Ratcliffe MB, Navia J, Zohdi T, Kassab GS, Guccione JM. Analysis of patient-specific surgical ventricular restoration – importance of an ellipsoid left ventricular geometry for diastolic and systolic function. Journal of Applied Physiology 2013; 115(1):136-144.
  35. Zhong L, Ng K, Sim LL, Lau YH, Allen J, Sim D, Lee R, Chua T, Gassab K, Kwok B, Tan RS. Myocardial contractile dysfunction associated with 3-month and 1-year mortality in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction. Int J Cardiol 2013: 168(3):1975-1983.
  36. Zhong L, Gobeawan L, Su Y, Tan JL, Chua T, Tan RS, Kassab G. Right ventricular regional wall curvedness and area strain in patients with repaired Tetralogy of Fallot. Am J Physiology Heart Circ Physiol 2012:302(6):H1306-H1316.

Research Trials

  • Effective and cost-effective of Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of noninvasive fractional flow reserve for physiological assessment in suspected coronary artery disease (ECONOMY study) (2020-2023)
  • Integrated computational modeling of blood flow and mechanics in congenital heart disease (INITIATE study) (2016-2021)