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Dream turned true--Quo Vadis?

The Quo Vadis? feature was launched in Clinical Chemistry in the April 2012 issue with the aim of enabling young scientists to express their thoughts, concerns, and dreams. I have personally found Quo Vadis? to be wonderful and refreshing, because it allows me to read responses from multiple young scientists on the same issue. For the June 2013 issue, the requested responses were to the question, "If you could have dinner with one famous person, who would it be and why?"

I voiced my dream to have dinner with Dr. Carl A. Burtis. I chose Dr. Burtis because he has been a respected contributor to the field of clinical chemistry for many years. Most importantly, he is a principal editor of the Teitz Textbook of Clinical Chemistry and Molecular Diagnostics, the most extensively used textbook globally and considered "the bible." When I read the Inspiring Minds article about him in Clinical Chemistry in 2008, I was so impressed that he became a role model for me. But the story doesn't end here. Surprisingly, several weeks after my Quo Vadis? response was published, I received mail from Dr. Burtis stating that he wanted to make my dream come true. "I have won several awards over the course of my career, but none match the acknowledgment that your message conveyed," Dr. Burtis mentioned in his mail. After subsequent communications, our meeting was set at a dinner program of the board of editors of Clinical Chemistry during the last AACC Annual Meeting, in Houston, Texas.

The AACC Annual Meeting is really a magnificent event with multifaceted merits. From the edu cational sessions to clinical laboratory expo, scientific interactions to professional networking, there was no doubt that I benefited from every step I took at the meeting. I have attended the AACC Annual Meeting twice before, once as an international travel grant awardee and next as a volunteer, but for this year's meeting in Houston, I had even more spirit and enthusiasm.

First, our study on the qualitative determination of triglyceride hydroperoxide in VLDL, intermediate-density lipoprotein, and human plasma with an Orbitrap mass spectrometer, which was conducted under supervision of my professors Hitoshi Chiba and Shu-Ping Hui, was recognized as a National Academy of Clinical Biochemistry Distinguished Abstract for presentation. Particularly for the young scientist, this type of recognition has great value in a career, and it was very encouraging for us. Second, the educational sessions and the lab expo helped me to update and gain better understanding of the diverse fields within laboratory medicine. In general, the meeting was productive and unquestionably fruitful for the development of my professional career. Finally, the most wonderful and memorable achievement during the meeting was being the guest of Dr. Burtis at the editors' dinner. A couple of hours' talk with him provided me an opportunity to better know his scientific contribution and personal life. Surrounded by many eminent and extraordinary figures during the dinner--including Dr. Nader Rifai, Clinical Chemistry editor-in-chief; Dr. Y.M. Dennis Lo, from The Chinese University of Hong Kong; and many reputable editors of Clinical Chemistry (who were otherwise known only by name to me)--I was both very happy and proud. It gave me immense pleasure to be a guest of Dr. Burtis and ineffable joy when he presented me a copy of the 2256-page recent edition of his textbook (Fig. 1). It was special for me, not just because it was presented by its principal editor but also because it was autographed by most of the editors of Clinical Chemistry, including many contributors to the textbook itself. That's maybe the reason Dr. Fred S. Apple, from the University of Minnesota, mentioned to me, "I too have a dream to have dinner with Carl, so I too deserve this bible."

Thank you, Quo Vadis?, for making my dream come true in such a special way. I wish you could fulfill dreams of every young scientist.

Author Contributions: All authors confirmed they have contributed to the intellectual content of this paper and have met the following 3 requirements: (a) significant contributions to the conception and design, acquisition of data, oranalysis and interpretation of data; (b) drafting or revising the article for intellectual content; and (c) final approval of the published article.

Authors' Disclosures or Potential Conflicts of Interest: No authors declared any potential conflicts of interest.

DOI: 10.1373/clinchem.2013.216580

Rojeet Shrestha *

Faculty of Health Sciences, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan.

* Address correspondence to this author at: Faculty of Health Sciences, Hokkaido University, Kita-12, Nishi-5, Sapporo 060-0812, Japan. Fax 11-7063395; e-mail

Received September 23, 2013; accepted September 24, 2013.
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Title Annotation:News & Views
Author:Shrestha, Rojeet
Publication:Clinical Chemistry
Date:Dec 1, 2013
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