8884 Saleh Al-Hamed, Al-Faisaliyah District,
Jeddah 23442 3160, Saudi Arabia
M. Samer Rastam, MD, PhD
A. Positions and Honors
Since March 2016
Assistant Professor, Department of basic medical sciences, Al Farabi Colleges,
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
January 2003 – December 2015:
University of Aleppo - Medical School Aleppo, Syria
Professor and Chair, Department of Pathology, Aleppo School of Medicine: Professor
of Pathology, Medical Statistics and Epidemiology, and Medical Research for medical
students and post-graduate doctors (medical and dental schools).
Representative and trainer of the Arab Board of Health Specializations (pathology) at
Aleppo University Hospital.
Manager of Quality Assurance Unit at the medical faculty since January 2012.
January 2003 – June 2012:
Syrian Center for Tobacco Studies, Aleppo, Syria
Researcher; Main Biostatistician and Data Manager; and Clinical Laboratory Manager
The center is the first health research center in Syria; the center is an international
collaboration between the University of Memphis (USA), Virginia Commonwealth
University (USA), and the University of Muenster (Germany).
Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences: The center has
been recognized with the Hamdan Award for best medical institute in the Arab world for the
June 2009 – June 2012: National Advisory Board on Research Ethics in Syria.
March – September 2010:
Local project manager and consultant in the Health and Socio-economic Impact Study: Study
is part of the German Syrian Water Loss Reduction Programme Aleppo, funded by KfW (für
Wiederaufbau Kreditanstalt) Bankengruppe, Germany and conducted by GITEC Consult
July – December – 2002:
Emory University; Atlanta, GA, USA
Epidemiology Department - Georgia Center for Cancer Statistics (SEER Program) as a data
manager and analyst.
May – June 2002:
American Cancer Society, Atlanta, GA, USA
Tobacco Control office as a data manager.
Jan 1998- June 2001:
University of Aleppo - Medical School Aleppo, Syria
Faculty, Pathology Department, Aleppo School of Medicine, Syria.
April 1994- Dec 1997:
University of Tishreen - Medical School Latakia, Syria
Faculty, Pathology Department, Tishreen School of Medicine, Syria.
B. Supervisory Experience:
Dr. Rastam is a co-supervisor for three Mater degree in Pathology, and the main supervisor
for the following three Mater degree in Pathology (theses):
1. Investigation of the Presence of Human Papilloma virus (HPV) In Colorectal
2. Clinicopathology and Immunohistochemistry of angiogenesis in invasive ductal
carcinoma of the breast
3. The Effect of Fixation Delay and Specimen Type on Evaluation of Cell Proliferation
in Invasive Ductal Carcinoma of the Breast.
Arabic; English; and Russian.
2001-2002: Emory University – Atlanta, GA, USA as a Humphrey Fellow in Cancer
Epidemiology, Tobacco Control, & Statistics.
1991-1994: PhD in Pathology – Moscow - Russia
1989-1991: Master Degree in Pathology – U.S.S.R
1979-1985: Medical Doctor – University of Aleppo
E. Peer-reviewed publications (in chronological order)
43 Publications ; Citations:881 total citations by 527 documents; 120.46 Impact points
In a recent report by the Syria National Erasmus plus (program of the European Union) and
higher education reform experts in the ministry of higher education, Dr. Rastam was ranked
among all Syrian international researchers , and 8th
among health sciences researchers.
1. Al Ali R, Rastam S, Ibrahim I, Bazzi A, Fayad S, Shihadeh AL, Zaatari GS, Maziak
W.; A comparative study of systemic carcinogen exposure in waterpipe smokers,
cigarette smokers and non-smokers; Tob Control. 2015 Mar;24(2):125-7.
2. Ward KD, Ahn S, Mzayek F, Al Ali R, Rastam S, Asfar T, Fouad F, Maziak W.; The
Relationship Between Waterpipe Smoking and Body Weight: Population-Based
Findings From Syria.; Nicotine Tob Res. 2015 Jan;17(1):34-40.
3. Wilcox ML, Mason H, Fouad FM, Rastam S, Ali RA, Page TF, Capewell S,
O'Flaherty M, Maziak W.; Cost-effectiveness analysis of salt reduction policies to
reduce coronary heart disease in Syria, 2010-2020; Int J Public Health. 2015 Jan;60
4. Al Moustafa AE, Ghabreau L, Akil N, Rastam S, Alachkar A, Yasmeen A.; High-
Risk HPVs and Human Carcinomas in the Syrian Population.; Front Oncol. 2014 Apr
5. Asfar T, Al Ali R, Rastam S, Maziak W, Ward KD. ; Behavioral cessation treatment
of waterpipe smoking: The first pilot randomized controlled trial.; Addict Behav.
6. Al Ali R, Mzayek F, Rastam S, M Fouad F, O Flaherty M, Capewell S, Maziak W.;
Forecasting future prevalence of type 2 diabetes mellitus in Syria.; BMC Public
Health. 2013 May 25;13:507.
7. Rastam S, Al Ali R, Maziak W, Mzayek F, Fouad FM, O'Flaherty M, Capewell S.;
Explaining the increase in coronary heart disease mortality in Syria between 1996 and
2006.; BMC Public Health. 2012 Sep 9;12:754.
8. Ward KD, Asfar T, Al Ali R, Rastam S, Vander Weg MW, Eissenberg T, Maziak
W.; Randomized trial of the effectiveness of combined behavioral/pharmacological
smoking cessation treatment in Syrian primary care clinics.; Addiction. 2013
9. Radwan Al Ali, Samer Rastam, Fouad M. Fouad, Wasim Maziak; Impact of
smoking cessation on 10-Year risk of CHD in Aleppo, Syria; Circulation 05/2012;
10. Al Ali R, Rastam S, Fouad FM, Mzayek F, Maziak W.; Modifiable cardiovascular
risk factors among adults in Aleppo, Syria.; Int J Public Health. 2011 Dec;56(6):653-
11. Niveen ME Abu-Rmeileh, O Saidi, K Sözmen, S Rastam, M O'Flaherty; Explaining
recent cardiovascular trends in Eastern Mediterranean populations; Journal of
Epidemiology & Community Health 08/2011; 65(Suppl 1):A139-A139.
12. Rastam S; Eissenberg T, Ibrahim I, Ward K.D., Khalil R, Maziak W.; Comparative
analysis of waterpipe and cigarette suppression of abstinence and craving symptoms;
Addict Behav. 2011 May;36(5):555-9.
13. Maziak W, Rastam S, Shihadeh AL, Bazzi A, Ibrahim I, Zaatari GS, Ward KD,
Eissenberg T.; Nicotine exposure in daily waterpipe smokers and its relation to puff
topography.; Addict Behav. 2011 Apr;36(4):397-9. Epub 2010 Dec 2.
14. Albache N, Al Ali R, Rastam S, Fouad FM, Mzayek F, Maziak W.; Epidemiology of
Type 2 diabetes mellitus in Aleppo, Syria.; J Diabetes. 2010 Jun;2(2):85-91
15. Kilzieh N, Rastam S, Ward KD, Maziak W.; Gender, depression and physical
impairment: an epidemiologic perspective from Aleppo, Syria.; Soc Psychiatry
Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2010 Jun;45(6):595-602. Epub 2010 Mar 2.
16. Fouad FM, Rastam S, Al Moustafa AE.; Involvement of water pipe smoking in the
development of human pancreatic cancer.; Int J Cancer. 2009 Nov 23.
17. Rastam S, Li FM, Fouad FM, Al Kamal HM, Akil N, Al Moustafa AE.; Water pipe
smoking and human oral cancers.; Med Hypotheses. 2010 Mar;74(3):457-9. Epub
2009 Nov 4.
18. Balsam Ahmad, Fouad Fouad, Samer Rastam, Tanja Pless-Mulloli; Systematic
Observations of Health Damaging Factors in Informal Neighbourhoods in Aleppo,
Syria-A Pilot Study, Epidemiology 11/2009; 20.
19. Maziak W, Rastam S, Ibrahim I, Ward KD, Shihadeh A, Eissenberg T.; CO
exposure, puff topography, and subjective effects in waterpipe tobacco smokers.;
Nicotine Tob Res. 2009 Jul;11(7):806-11.
20. Kilzieh N, Rastam S, Maziak W, Ward KD.; Comorbidity of depression with chronic
diseases: a population-based study in Aleppo, Syria.; Int J Psychiatry Med.
21. Maziak W, Rastam S, Ibrahim I, Ward KD, Eissenberg T. Waterpipe-associated
particulate matter emissions. Nicotine Tob Res. 2008 Mar;10(3):519-23.
22. Moukeh G, Yacoub R, Fahdi F, Rastam S, Albitar S.; Epidemiology of hemodialysis
patients in Aleppo city.; Saudi J Kidney Dis Transpl. 2009 Jan;20(1):140-6.
23. Maziak W, Ali RA, Fouad MF, Rastam S, Wipfli H, Travers MJ, Ward KD,
Eissenberg T. Exposure to secondhand smoke at home and in public places in Syria: a
developing country's perspective. Inhal Toxicol. 2008 Jan;20(1):17-24.
24. Fouad M, Rastam S, Ward K, Maziak W. Prevalence of obesity and its associated
factors in Aleppo, Syria. Prev Control. 2006 Jun;2(2):85-94.
25. Asfar T, Ahmad B, Rastam S, Mulloli TP, Ward KD, Maziak W. Self-rated health
and its determinants among adults in Syria: a model from the Middle East. BMC
Public Health. 2007 Jul 25;7(147):177.
26. Maziak W, Rastam S, Mzayek F, Ward KD, Eissenberg T, Keil U. Cardiovascular
health among adults in Syria: a model from developing countries. Ann Epidemiol.
2007 Sep;17(9):713-20. Epub 2007 Jun 6.
27. Ward KD, Eissenberg T, Rastam S, Asfar T, Mzayek F, Fouad MF, Hammal F,
Mock J, Maziak W.; The tobacco epidemic in Syria. Tobacco Control 2006; 15(Supp
28. Maziak W, Ward KD, Rastam S. Injuries in Aleppo, Syria; first population-based
estimates and characterization of predominant types. BMC Public Health. 2006 Mar
29. Maziak W, Ward KD, Mzayek F, Rastam S, Bachir ME, Fouad MF, Hammal F,
Asfar T, Mock J, Nuwayhid I, Frumkin H, Grimsley F, Chibli M. Mapping the health
and environmental situation in informal zones in Aleppo, Syria: report from the
Aleppo household survey. Int Arch Occup Environ Health 2005;78: 547-58.
30. Ward KD, Hammal F, VanderWeg MW, Eissenberg T, Asfar T, Rastam S, Maziak
W. Are waterpipe users interested in quitting? Nicotine Tob Res 2005; 7(1):149-56.
31. Maziak W, Ward KD, Rastam S, et al. Extent of exposure to environmental tobacco
smoke (ETS) and its dose-response relation to respiratory health among adults. Respir
32. Maziak W, Eissenberg T, Rastam S, et al. Beliefs and attitudes related to narghile
(waterpipe) smoking among university students in Syria. Ann Epidemiol
33. Rastam S, Ward KD, Eissenberg T, Maziak W. Estimating the beginning of the
waterpipe epidemic in Syria. BMC Public Health. 2004 Aug 4; 4:32.
34. Maziak W, Fouad FM, Asfar T, Hammal F, Bachir EM, Rastam S, Eissenberg T,
Ward KD. Prevalence and characteristics of narghile smoking among university
students in Syria. Int J Tuberc Lung Dis. 2004 Jul;8(7):882-9.
35. Maziak W, Hammal F, Rastam S, et al. Characteristics of cigarette smoking and
quitting among university students in Syria. Prev Med 2004;39(2):330-6.
36. Maziak W, Rastam S, Eissenberg T, et al. Gender and smoking status-based analysis
of views regarding waterpipe and cigarette smoking in Aleppo, Syria. Prev Med
37. Mzayek F, Asfar T, Rastam S, Maziak W. Neoplastic diseases in Aleppo, Syria. Eur J
Cancer Prev. 2002 Oct;11(5):503-7.
My work is cited by two Wikipedia articles:
F. Research Support
516720-TEMPUS-1-2011-1-FR-TEMPUS-JPCR Jan 11 – Jan 14
National Coordinator - The project was suspend due to the current situation in Syria
MAPHAR: MAster in Public Health Applied Research: An E.U. project that aims at
strengthening research capacity applied to public health in Syria, and more particularly at
creating an online Master's degree in public health research methods.
Partners: ISPED- Bordeaux School of Public Health – University Bordeaux Segalen (France);
University of Copenhagen (Denmark); University of Newcastle upon Tyne (United
Kingdom) ; Aleppo University (Syria); Damascus University (Syria); Tishreen University
(Syria); Syrian Virtual University (Syria); Syrian Center for Tobacco Studies (Syria);
Ministry of Health – Center for Strategic Health Studies (Syria); Ministry of Higher
Education (Syria); Ministry of Environment Affairs (Syria).
FP7-HEALTH-2007-B March 09 – August 12
MEDCHAMPS—MEDiterranean studies of Cardiovascular disease and Hyperglycaemia:
Analytical Modeling of Population Socio-economic transitions; European Commission:
CORDIS Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).
Partners: Institute of Health and Society, Newcastle University (UK) ; School of Population
Community and Behavioural Sciences, University of Liverpool (UK); Department of
Pharmacology & Therapeutics, Trinity College Dublin (Ireland); Department of Public
Health, School of Medicine, Dokuz Eylul University (Turkey); Syrian Center for Tobacco
Studies (Syria); Institute of Community and Public Health (ICPH), Birzeit University
(Occupied Palestinian Territory); National Public Health Institute (INSP), CVD
Epidemiology and Prevention Research Laboratory (Tunisia).
NIDA (R01 DA024876) July 07 – June 12
Responding to the changing tobacco epidemic in the Eastern Mediterranean Region; NIDA:
National Institute on Drug Abuse, US
R03 TW07233-01(FIRCA) July 06 - June 09
Develop a dependence scale for waterpipe users; NIH-FIRCA; National Institute of Health,
Research for international tobacco control Canada November 06 – May 10
Determinants and consequences of smoking the narghile: extending the research agenda;
Research for International Tobacco Control, a secretariat of the International Development
Research Centre (Canada).
Valsartan as an anti-hypertensive medication May 2009
A Post Marketing Surveillance Study by Ibn Al Haytham Pharma.
Diabetes in Syria July 07 – June 08
The Second household survey in Aleppo to estimate the prevalence and correlates of diabetes
and other cardiovascular risk factors in the community by the Diabetes Research Unit at
Aleppo University; Aleppo, Syria.
R01 TW05962 July 02 – June 07
Establishment of the Syrian Center for Tobacco Studies. The goal of this project is to develop
capacity and infrastructure support for tobacco control efforts in the Eastern Mediterranean
region, focusing on primary-care based smoking cessation intervention; NIH’s John E.
Fogarty International Center (FIC), National Institute of Health (NIH), US.
IC-Health Jan 04- Dec 05
Developing smoking cessation intervention for water pipe smokers; Start-up grant (SUG) for
tobacco related research from the Initiative for Cardiovascular Health Research in the
Developing Countries (IC-Health); New Delhi, India.
R21 TW006545 July 03 – June 05
Health and environmental risks in informal urban settlements. The goal of this project is to
assess the health status and environmental risks among residents of unincorporated urban
areas in Aleppo, Syria; Health, Environment, and Economic Development (HEED) program
grants by the NIH’s John E. Fogarty International Center (FIC), National Institute of Health
G- Submitted abstracts and presentations at international meetings
1. Explaining the increase in coronary heart disease mortality in Syria between
1996 and 2006; abstract was accepted for presentation at the World Congress of
Cardiology; 18-21 April, 2012; Dubai, UAE.
2. Hooked on nicotine checklist (HONC) in waterpipe smokers; 15th World
Conference on Tobacco or Health; Singapore; 20-24 March, 2012; Singapore.
3. Waterpipe and cigarette particulate matter (PM) emissions in hospitality venues;
15th World Conference on Tobacco or Health; Singapore; 20-24 March, 2012;
4. Waterpipe smoking cessation program: A randomized Clinical Trial; 15th World
Conference on Tobacco or Health; Singapore; 20-24 March, 2012; Singapore.
5. Subjective Measures, puff topography and exposure to CO in Waterpipe users;
14th World Conference on Tobacco or Health, Mumbai, INDIA, March 8-12, 2009
6. Dependence, withdrawal and withdrawal suppression in waterpipe smokers; 13th
World Conference on Tobacco or Health, Washington, D.C., USA, 9-15 July 2006.
7. Data validation in health research; Initiative for Cardiovascular Health Research in
the Developing Countries (IC Health), Statistics & Data Management workshop, New
Delhi, India, 22-24 March 2006.
8. Abstinence-induced withdrawal and withdrawal suppression in Syrian smokers;
Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco 11th Annual Meeting and the 7th
Annual SRNT European Conference, Prague, Czech Republic, 20-23 March 2005.
9. Assessment of the validity of the Arabic version of Tiffany-Drobes questionnaire
of smoking urge; Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco 11th Annual
Meeting and the 7th Annual SRNT European Conference, Prague, Czech Republic,
20-23 March 2005.
10. Smoking in Syria: Profile of a Developing Country; 12th World Conference on
Tobacco or Health, Helsinki, Finland, 3-8 August 2003.