Deficits in Dopamine D2 Receptors and Presynaptic Dopamine in Heroin Dependence: Commonalities and Differences with Other Types of Addiction
Positron emission tomography (PET) imaging studies have shown that addiction to a number of substances of abuse is associated with a decrease in dopamine D2/3 receptor binding and decreased presynaptic dopamine release in the striatum. Some studies have also shown that these reductions are associated with the severity of addiction. For example, in cocaine dependence, low dopamine release is associated with the choice to self-administer cocaine. The goal of the present study was to investigate these parameters of striatal dopamine transmission in heroin dependence and their association with drug seeking behavior.
Heroin-dependent and healthy control subjects were scanned with [11C]raclopride before and after stimulant administration (methylphenidate) to measure striatal D2/3 receptor binding and presynaptic dopamine release. After the PET scans, the heroin-dependent subjects performed heroin self-administration sessions.
Both striatal D2/3 receptor binding and dopamine release were reduced in the heroin-dependent subjects compared with healthy control subjects. However, neither PET measure of dopamine transmission predicted the choice to self-administer heroin.
These findings show that heroin addiction, like addiction to other drugs of abuse, is associated with low D2/3 receptor binding and low presynaptic dopamine. However, neither of these outcome measures was associated with the choice to self-administer heroin.
French Heritage Language Learning: A Site of Multilingual Identity Formation, Cultural Exploration, and Creative Expression in New York City
Since 2005, the French Heritage Language Program has sought to address the needs of underserved French-speaking communities throughout the United States. With the goal of “making French an asset for new Americans,” the majority of whom come from West Africa and Haiti, the FHLP not only provides free French language training, it also creates a space where these students can construct their identities as multilingual speakers and learn the value of their various cultural backgrounds. By analyzing data gathered from students, teachers, and staff in the New York City branch of the FHLP program, including sociolinguistic interviews, classroom observations, and surveys, this article explores identity formation with regard to not only French but to all languages in a person’s linguistic repertoire. To contextualize the participants’ experiences, a first line of inquiry examines the FHLP in relation to monolingual ideologies and policies often inherent in French language education. How does the program address French as a heritage language that may be only one of many heritage languages a student possesses and that may only have a minimal presence as a home language? A second line of inquiry then focuses on individual participants’ language ideologies. Given that many students come from former French colonies, what are their reasons for learning French? What are their attitudes toward French and other languages? What is their relationship with their countries of origin, with France, or with the greater Francophone world? Through these questions, this article charts multilingual identity formation, cultural exploration, and creative expression.
Negotiating Martinican Identity amid French Universalism: Racial and Linguistic Considerations
In attempts to conceptualize identity formation in the French Caribbean, authors and literary scholars have championed different movements such as Negritude, Creoleness, and Creolization. However, these theorizations are not just within the purview of elite academic discourse or producers of literary works because ‘everyday people’ debate and reflect on these issues as well. In exploring the complexities of being a citizen of a French overseas department where Martinicans must confront French assimilationist practices that imagine France as a white, European, French-speaking nation above all else, this sociolinguistic, qualitative study advances discussions concerning language, citizenship, and inclusion in light of continued dissatisfaction with the racial politics associated with language practice both on the island and the mainland. In doing so, it provides a new understanding of how racial hierarchies are reproduced and/or contested in everyday language as well as in postcolonial theory and literature.
Senegal Abroad: Linguistic Borders, Racial Formations, and Diasporic Imaginaries
Senegal Abroad explores the fascinating role of language in national, transnational, postcolonial, racial, and migrant identities. Capturing the experiences of Senegalese in Paris, Rome, and New York, it depicts how they make sense of who they are–and how they fit into their communities, countries, and the larger global Senegalese diaspora. Drawing on extensive interviews with a wide range of emigrants as well as people of Senegalese heritage, Maya Angela Smith contends that they shape their identity as they purposefully switch between languages and structure their discourse. The Senegalese are notable, Smith suggests, both in their capacity for movement and in their multifaceted approach to language. She finds that, although the emigrants she interviews express complicated relationships to the multiple languages they speak and the places they inhabit, they also convey pleasure in both travel and language. Offering a mix of poignant, funny, reflexive, introspective, and witty stories, they blur the lines between the utility and pleasure of language, allowing a more nuanced understanding of why and how Senegalese move.
Using interconnected texts to highlight culture in the foreign language classroom
SLA research on foreign language pedagogy has long demonstrated that culture is essential to language learning. However, presenting culture in the language classroom poses certain problems. For learners, there is a tendency to stereotype others and to rely excessively on the teacher. For teachers, there is a tendency to transmit isolated facts without elaboration and to associate a target language with a single monolithic culture. This article presents a pedagogical approach to culture that not only exposes students to networks of authentic texts but also motivates them to research for themselves the many subtleties of the target culture. By learning how to approach a network of texts, students gain deeper insight into the target culture and develop their ability to interpret texts that they will subsequently encounter on their own. This approach will be illustrated by a detailed lesson plan as well as an analysis of the responses of students who engaged with these materials in an advanced intermediate level French class.
Multilingual Practices of Senegalese Immigrants in Paris and Rome: A Comparative Study of Language Use and Identity Construction
Multilingual practices of Senegalese immigrants in Rome: Construction of identities and negotiation of boundaries
While African immigrants and Italians of African descent have become more visible in Italian society since the 1980s, Italian culture and identity are still largely understood by majority white Italians in terms of race, nationhood, and family history. Overwhelmingly absent from these national discussions concerning the inclusion of immigrants, foreign residents, and so-called non-Italian citizens in society are the very people at the center of these debates. To give voice to some of these individuals, this article explores how a specific group, the Senegalese community in Rome, conceptualizes and understands identity formation as foreigners and as linguistic, racial and ethnic minorities through the lens of Applied Linguistics. Through analysis of code-switching in qualitative ethnographic data collected in the spring of 2010, I show how multilingual practices illustrate these immigrants’ understandings of inclusion/exclusion and how these notions intersect with ideas about blackness. Therefore, this essay calls into question the static, exclusionary narrative on national identity and shows the ways in which the Senegalese community in Rome inserts formulations of blackness in the conversation. By comprehending how immigrants perceive their identities and the sites in which these identities are constructed, we gain a more multifaceted perspective on what it means to be Italian.
Promoting Policy and Environmental Change in Faith-Based Organizations: Description and Findings From a Mini-Grants Program
The Emory Prevention Research Center’s Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network mini-grant program funded faith-based organizations to implement policy and environmental change to promote healthy eating and physical activity in rural South Georgia. This study describes the existing health promotion environment and its relationship to church member behavior.
Data were obtained from parishioners of six churches in predominantly rural South Georgia.
Participants were 319 church members with average age of 48 years, of whom 80% were female and 84% were black/African-American.
Questionnaires assessed perceptions of the existing church health promotion environment relative to nutrition and physical activity, eating behavior and intention to use physical activity facilities at church, and eating and physical activity behaviors outside of church.
Multiple regression and ordinal logistic regression using generalized estimating equations were used to account for clustered data.
Results indicate that delivering messages via sermons and church bulletins, having healthy eating programs, and serving healthy foods are associated with participants’ self-reported consumption of healthy foods at church (all p values ≤ .001). Serving more healthy food and less unhealthy food was associated with healthier eating in general but not to physical activity in general (p values ≤ .001).
The church environment may play an important role in supporting healthy eating in this setting and more generally.
Leveraging university-community partnerships in rural Georgia: A community health needs assessment template for hospitals
Background: Under the Affordable Care Act, nonprofit hospitals are required to conduct a Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) every three years. Using recommendations proposed by Georgia Watch, students and faculty members from the University of Georgia (UGA) conducted a CHNA for a hospital in a rural county in Georgia. The purpose of the CHNA was to identify community health problems and needs, as well as community assets and resources. The aim of this report is to describe the process for conducting the CHNA, the findings, and the lessons learned. Methods: The CHNA team consisted of students and faculty members from UGA’s College of Public Health and a Public Service and Outreach professional who worked in the community. In completing the CHNA, the team used the following fivestep process: define community, collect secondary data on community health, gather community input and collect primary data, prioritize community health needs, and implement strategies to address community health needs. Primary and secondary data were collected. Results: By triangulating findings across data sources, the CHNA team created a community health profile for the service area of the hospital. Based on these findings, the community identified four main areas for improvement, prioritized these health issues, and developed an implementation strategy for the hospital and community. Conclusions: The process used to conduct this CHNA can serve as a model for other rural communities undergoing similar assessments. Lessons learned from completing this CHNA can be applied to future CHNA efforts.
The Daily Relationship Between Aspects of Food Insecurity and Medication Adherence Among People Living with HIV with Recent Experiences of Hunger
Limited access to resources can significantly impact health behaviors. Previous research on food insecurity and HIV has focused on establishing the relationship between lacking access to nutritious food and antiretroviral (ARV) medication non-adherence in a variety of social contexts.
This study aims to determine if several aspects of food insecurity co-occur with missed doses of medication on a daily basis among a sample of people living with HIV who have recently experienced hunger.
The current study utilized a prospective, observational design to test the daily relationship between food insecurity and medication non-adherence. Participants were followed for 45 days and completed daily assessments of food insecurity and alcohol use via interactive text message surveys and electronic medication adherence monitoring using the Wisepill.
Fifty-nine men and women living with HIV contributed a total of 2,655 days of data. Results showed that severe food insecurity (i.e., hunger), but not less severe food insecurity (i.e., worrying about having food), significantly predicted missed doses of medication on a daily level. Daily alcohol use moderated this relationship in an unexpected way; when individuals were hungry and drank alcohol on a given day, they were less likely to miss a dose of medication.
Among people living with HIV with recent experiences of hunger, this study demonstrates that there is a daily relationship between hunger and non-adherence to antiretroviral therapy. Future research is needed to test interventions designed to directly address the daily relationship between food insecurity and medication non-adherence.