Professor Sven Plein

Professor Sven Plein


I am a Professor of Cardiology and British Heart Foundation Professor of Cardiovascular Imaging at the University of Leeds, where I have led the Department of Biomedical Imaging Science since 2017. In addition, I hold an honorary Consultant Cardiologist contract at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust in Leeds. I studied Medicine in Marburg/Germany and received an MD from the Phillips University in Marburg/Germany in 1995 and my PhD from the University of Leeds in 2004.

I was previously a British Heart Foundation Senior Clinical Research Fellow (2011-2015), Wellcome Trust Intermediate Research Fellow (2006-2010) and British Heart Foundation Junior Research Fellow (2001-2003).

I have held several societal positions including President of the Society for Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance, Vice President of the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging (EACVI) of the European Society of Cardiology, Chairman of the Working Group on Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the European Society of Cardiology and serve on several editorial boards including Senior Associate Editor ‘European Heart Journal – Cardiovascular Imaging’. 

My grant income totals >£20m as PI and includes a British Heart Foundation programme grant (Mechanisms of cardiovascular disease in diabetes mellitus) and I have published over 350 original research, review and position papers. 


  • Head of Department of Biomedical Imaging Science
  • Joint Lead Advanced Imaging Centre

Research interests

My main research interest is magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). I focus on developing and validating novel MRI methods and apply them to disease models and patients studies in order to answer clinically relevant questions. A particular of my group has been the development and clinical translation of myocardial perfusion MRI. More recently, my work has focussed on cardiometabolic disease, in particular the effects of diabetes mellitus on the cardiovascular system. 


  • MD (Marburg, Germany)
  • PhD (Leeds)

Professional memberships

  • FRCP (London)
  • Society for Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance
  • European Society of Cardiology

Student education

I have a particular interest in education and training and have initiated and led the European CMR certification process and the CMR exam, created the CMR pocket guides and a free CMR mobile App, and am editor of several CMR textbooks, most recently the new EACVI Textbook on CMR. I lecture locally, nationally and internationally on cardiovascular imaging topics. I supervise several PhD and MD students. 

Research groups and institutes

  • Leeds Institute of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Medicine
  • Biomedical Imaging Science
  • British Heart Foundation - Cardiovascular research
  • Multidisciplinary Cardiovascular Research Centre