The Catholic University of America

Media Advisory


CUA Lecture: "The Chemistry of Alcohol and Hangovers"

WHEN: 12:10-1 p.m., Monday, March 16

WHERE: The Catholic University of America
Hannan Hall, Room 106
620 Michigan Ave., N.E.
Washington, D.C.


Diane Bunce, CUA professor of chemistry, will give a lecture titled "The Chemistry of Alcohol and Hangovers" for her Chemistry in Modern Times class. Held on the eve of St. Patrick's Day, a holiday known for alcohol consumption, the lecture will focus on how the chemical reactions of alcohol in our bodies have physical effects, specifically hangovers.

The lecture also will feature a demonstration of how breathalyzers work.

"The decision to drink or not has implications for the chemistry of our bodies," Bunce says. "Both how alcohol is metabolized and the aftereffects are all controlled by chemical reactions. Even the detection of drinking in breathalyzers is based upon a chemical reaction. This presentation will help the audience understand the far-reaching implications of drinking on the body from a chemical point of view."

Known for her creative approaches to teaching chemistry, Bunce was awarded the 2007 James Flack Norris Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Teaching of Chemistry, American Chemical Society Helen Free Award for Public Outreach in 2001 and was named the 1993 District of Columbia Professor of the Year by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.

MEDIA: Coverage of the class is welcome. Reporters should contact Katie Lee or Mary McCarthy in the Office of Public Affairs at 202-319-5600 for more information.