Zhonglin Liu, MD

Professor, Medical Imaging

I have been engaged in research on nuclear medicine and molecular imaging for 20 years. My research focuses on characterizing and developing radiotracers to study the cellular and molecular events in cardiovascular disease and cancer. I implemented and validated a variety of small-animal models, including ischemic and non-ischemic heart models, atherosclerotic mouse models, and tumor models to detect and quantify the pathogenetic development using radiotracers and high-resolution SPECT imaging technology. I am also actively engaged in radiolabeling investigational drugs, antibodies, peptides, and other small molecules using 99mTc, 111 In, and 123 I / 125 I for specific molecular imaging. The bispecific cytokine radioligands I developed have been well applied in research projects for specific detection of upregulated inflammation in ischemic-reperfused hearts and atherosclerotic plaques. As PI on an NHLBI-funded project, I am using the cytokine-targeted SPECT imaging technique to study ischemia-reperfusion injury and post-infarct ventricular remodeling. As a core project leader in the Center for Gamma-Ray Imaging of the University of Arizona, I have coordinated multiple collaborating projects with both internal researchers and outside project teams. With my nuclear imaging and animal model experience, I will be able to provide valuable guidance regarding imaging acquisition, image study design for all investigators, who have no experience in molecular imaging with small- animal SPECT and PET imagers.

  • MD: China Medical University, China, 1984
  • China Medical University, Medical Imaging , China, 1991
Honors and Awards
  • 2007 Winner of Sylvia Sorkin Greenfield Award for the Best Scientific Paper in Medical Physics, American Association of Physicists in Medicine
  • 2003 Winner of the Journal of Nuclear Medicine's 2n,,Paper Award for Basic Science Investigations, the Society of Nuclear Medicine
  • 1996 Winner of the Annual Best Scientific Paper Awards, the Basic Science Category Journal of Nuclear Cardiology, the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology
  • 1995 Winner of the Young Teacher's Prize for Excellence in Teaching and Research, Fok Ying Tung Educational Foundation, Hong Kong
  • 1994 Science and Technology Progress Award for Excellence in Scientific Research, Liaoning Province, China

Select Publications


Liu, Z., C. Barber, A. Gupta, L. Wan, Y-W. Won, L. R. Furenlid, Q. Chen, A. A. Desai, M. Zhao, D. A. Bull, et al., "Imaging assessment of cardioprotection mediated by a dodecafluoropentane oxygen-carrier administered during myocardial infarction.", Nucl Med Biol, vol. 70, pp. 67-77, 2019 03. PMCID: PMC6778684  PMID: 30772168


Qin, Y., Q. Li, P. Ingram, C. Barber, Z. Liu, and R. S. Witte, "Ultrasound current source density imaging of the cardiac activation wave using a clinical cardiac catheter.", IEEE Trans Biomed Eng, vol. 62, issue 1, pp. 241-7, 2015 Jan. PMCID: PMC4406765  PMID: 25122512