Carl A. Burtis, PhD

Dr. Burtis is well-known as the editor of the current Tietz Textbook of Clinical Chemistry and Molecular Diagnostics. In the course of his career, he has held many AACC committee appointments and served a term on the board of directors. He chaired the organizing committee for the 1990 International Congress in Clinical Chemistry in San Francisco and served as President of AACC in 1989 and as Vice President of IFCC from 1999-2005.

Dr. Burtis spent most of his career at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and has held positions in industry and with the Centers for Disease Control.

The following are Dr. Burtis’ award announcements published in Clinical Chemistry.

1992 The Professor Alvin Dubin Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Profession and the Academy
Carl A. Burtis, PhD, FACB was honored with AACC's 1992 Professor Alvin Dubin Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Profession and the Academy.

1991 Outstanding Contributions to Clinical Chemistry
Carl A. Burtis received the 40th annual AACC Award for Outstanding Contributions to Clinical Chemistry. The award was sponsored by Miles, Inc., Diagnostics Division, manufacturer of Ames and Technicon products. Dr. Burtis, was born in Flagstaff, AZ, graduated from Colorado State University with a B.S. in nutrition and later earned both an M.S. and Ph.D. in biochemistry from Purdue University. His postgraduate training included postdoctoral research in the Analytical Chemistry Division of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Subsequently, he became a permanent staff member, associated with Dr. C. D. Scott of the Oak Ridge Body Fluids Analysis Group. In 1969, Dr. Burtis joined Varian Aerograph as Senior Chemist in their Liquid Chromatography Group, but returned to Oak Ridge National Laboratory in 1970 as Group Leader of the Centrifugal Analyzer Group in the Molecular Anatomy program of Dr. Norman Anderson. In 1974, he became Coordinator of the Biotechnology program of the Chemical Technology Division, whose work involved the application of liquid chromatography to the separation of compounds of interest and also the development and application of centrifugal analyzers to automated clinical analyses.

In 1976, Dr. Burtis joined the Centers for Disease Control as Chief of the Analytical Biochemistry Branch of the Clinical Chemistry Division, where he developed reference methods and materials for enzymes and other chemical analytes. Dr. Burtis returned to Oak Ridge National Laboratory in 1979 with dual appointments in the Chemical Technology and Health Divisions. Here he developed instrumentation and methodologies to detect and monitor exposure to environmental toxicants and managed the operation of the Oak Ridge clinical laboratory that served the employee population of all three Department of Energy Oak Ridge plants. In 1985 and for subsequent years thereafter, Dr. Burtis served as a technical consultant for the drug testing program of Martin Marietta Energy Systems, Inc. Dr. Burtis has more than 110 publications to his credit, and holds five patents, an additional three were pending at the time of the award. He also lectured widely and presented several plenary lectures at various national meetings and international congresses. Dr. Burtis has been a member of the AACC since 1972, serving on many committees, including the Committee on Enzymes (1974-81), the Committee on Standards (1975-81), the 1979 National Meeting Organizing Committee, the Oak Ridge Conference Organizing Committee (Chairman, 1981-86), the Meetings Management Group (1983-91; Chairman, 1986-87), the 1985 National Meeting Organizing Committee (Chairman), and the 1990 Organizing Committee of the XJV International Congress of Clinical Chemistry (Chairman). Dr. Burtis was also elected to the AACC Board of Directors (1983-86), and served as President in 1989. In 1986, he received the National Lectureship Award from the AACC.

In addition to participating actively in the AACC, he was also a titular member of the Commission on Automation of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), 1981-88, and has served on many subcommittees of the National Committee for Clinical Laboratory Standards (NCCLS). He served on the International Affairs Committee of NCCLS. He was a member and chairman of the International Federation for Clinical Chemistry (IFCC) Expert Panel on Instrumentation, and was appointed to the IFCC Scientific Committee for a five-year term beginning in 1991. Dr. Burtis sat on the editorial boards of Clinical Chemistry, the Journal of Automatic Chemistry, and the Giornale Italiano di Patologia Clinica. He resides in the city of Oak Ridge, TN, with Marvel, his wife of 32 years; they have three daughters.

1989 AACC Past President’s Award
Dr. Burtis served as President of AACC in 1989. During the same time, he was the chair of the organizing committee that planned the 1990 IFCC-AACC conference held in San Francisco.

1986 Lectureship Award
Carl A. Burtis received the AACC National Leadership Award, sponsored by Technicon Diagnostics Systems Division, Technicon Instruments Corp.

Dr. Burtis was born in Flagstaff, AZ, in 1937. He received the B.S. degree from Colorado State University in nutrition, and both the M.S. and the Ph.D. degrees in biochemistry from Purdue University. Postgraduate training included a year as a postdoctoral research associate in the Analytical Chemistry Division of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He subsequently became a permanent staff member of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory and was associated with Dr. C. D. Scott in the Oak Ridge Body Fluids Analysis Group.

In 1969, he joined Varian Aerograph and held the position of senior chemist within their Liquid Chromatography Group.
In 1970, Dr. Burtis returned to the Oak Ridge National Laboratory as group leader of the Centrifugal Analyzer Group in Dr. Norman Anderson’s Molecular Anatomy Program. In 1974, he transferred into the Chemical Technology Division and became coordinator of its Biotechnology Program. His major activities included the application of liquid chromatography to the separation of compounds of biological interest, and for five years he directed a group involved in the development and application of centrifugal analyzers to automated clinical analyses.

In 1976, he accepted a position at the Centers for Disease Control as Chief of the Analytical Biochemistry Branch, Clinical Chemistry Division. Major responsibilities included the development of reference methods and materials for enzyme and other clinical analytes.

In 1979, Dr. Burtis returned to the Oak Ridge National Laboratory with a dual appointment in the Chemical Technology and Health Divisions. Major responsibilities included the development of instrumentation and methodologies to detect and monitor exposure to environmental toxicants and the routine operation of the ORNL clinical laboratory that served the employee population of all three DOE Oak Ridge plants.

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