Alastair D Burt
Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Director of NovoPath, Theme Lead for Precision Medicine, Genomics and Informatics at Newcastle University and Vice Chair, Integrated Covid Hub NE Innovation Board
Alastair Burt was born in Dunfermline, Scotland and is a graduate of the University of Glasgow where he obtained a BSc in Pathology with First Class Honours in 1979, MBChB with Commendation in 1981 and MD with Honours and the Bellahouston Medal in 1991.
Upon graduation, he became Junior House Officer in General Medicine with Professor Sir Abraham Goldberg and Junior House Officer in Surgery with Professor Sir David Carter. He subsequently took up training in surgical pathology under the tutelage of Professor Sir Roddy MacSween. During this time, he developed expertise in diagnostic pathology of the liver and a keen interest in the pathogenesis of liver disease and in particular mechanisms of liver fibrosis. In 1985-86 he was a Peel Trust Fellow in the Lab for Cell Biology and Histology at Free University of Brussels under the direction of Professor Eddie Wisse. On return to the UK and completion of his postgraduate training in surgical pathology he moved to the University of Newcastle upon Tyne to become Senior Lecturer in Pathology and Honorary Consultant Histopathologist. He was promoted to a personal Chair in Hepatopathology in 1995 and then the established Chair of Pathology in 1998. He became Dean of Clinical Medicine at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne in 2005.
He moved to South Australia in January 2013 to take up the post of Dean of Medicine and Head of the School of Medicine. In August 2014, he became acting Executive Dean of the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences and was appointed to the substantive role in December 2014. He continued to maintain an active research interest in liver disease and has published extensively in high quality peer-reviewed journals including Nature, Nature Medicine, Nature Communications, Lancet, N Engl J Med, Gastroenterology, Hepatology. He has an H index of 72 and over 23000 citations.
He has secured over $8m in external grants and has supervised 16 HDR students to completion. He is Editor in Chief of the principal international text book in his field, MacSween’s Pathology of the Liver, now into its 8th edition. In addition, he completed seven years as Editor in Chief of the peer reviewed journal, Histopathology. He was elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences in 2015.
As Executive Dean, he successfully led a number of major changes which include restructure of the Faculty, implementation of the most comprehensive Faculty-level professional services reform program in the institution, ‘reimagining’ of the Bachelor of Health Sciences and Psychological Sciences programs and the development of a new Bachelor/MD program in Medicine to achieve AQF level 9 status. He chaired the key governance groups for the development of the $240m Adelaide Health and Medical Sciences building which was officially opened in February 2017 and the governance committees for the redevelopment of the Helen Mayo Buildings. He was a member of the Board of SAHMRI, the Executive of the SA Health Research and Translation Centre and Adelaide BioMed City Partners.
He developed strong partnerships with key stakeholders in the health sector in particular SA Health and its networks and chaired the SA Clinical Training Council. He was awarded Emeritus status by the university in March 2019. He returned to the UK and was appointed Professor of Precision and Molecular Pathology at Newcastle University and Honorary Consultant Histopathologist in November 2019. He is currently Director of NovoPath, Theme Lead for Precision Medicine, Genomics and Informatics at Newcastle University and Vice Chair, Integrated Covid Hub NE Innovation Board.