WASHINGTON, DC – Distilled Spirits Council (DISCUS) Senior Vice President Sam Zakhari, PhD, today received the Thurman Lectureship Award for his significant impact on the field of alcohol and liver research which helped move the field forward.

“I am truly honored to receive this year’s Thurman Lectureship Award, and am humbled to be among such influential researchers in this significant field,” Zakhari said.  “I have dedicated my career to a better understanding of the science of alcohol and health and to the hepatology field which was greatly advanced by Dr. Thurman’s work.”

Zakhari, former director of the Division of Metabolism and Health Effects at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), the country’s lead agency on alcohol and health, is a biomedical scientist with over 40 years of research experience in the fields of pharmacology, toxicology, biochemistry, pharmaceutical chemistry, physiology and molecular biology.

Zakhari is the author of over 70 scientific articles and editor of 11 monographs on the subject of alcohol and health.  Zakhari joined the Distilled Spirits Council in 2012 as head of the Office of Science and currently advises the distilled spirits industry on matters related to scientific policy and research.

After accepting his award, Dr. Zakhari presented a lecture entitled, “Alcoholic Liver Disease: Sites and Insights,” in which he summarized the advancement in our knowledge of how chronic heavy alcohol consumption injures the liver.  Throughout the seminar, Dr. Zakhari weaved in Dr. Thurman’s important contributions to this field and to the total body of literature related to hepatology.

The Thurman award is given to distinguished researchers who contribute to the knowledge of alcohol and liver function and commemorates the life and scientific excellence of the late Ronald G. Thurman.  For over thirty years, Thurman was an outstanding investigator in the fields of hepatic metabolism, alcoholic liver injury and toxicology and trained hundreds of scientists along the way.