All Publications

  • Words Matter: An Antibias Workshop for Health Care Professionals to Reduce Stigmatizing Language. MedEdPORTAL : the journal of teaching and learning resources Raney, J., Pal, R., Lee, T., Saenz, S. R., Bhushan, D., Leahy, P., Johnson, C., Kapphahn, C., Gisondi, M. A., Hoang, K. 2021; 17: 11115


    Introduction: Biased language influences health care providers' perceptions of patients, impacts their clinical care, and prevents vulnerable populations from seeking treatment. Training clinicians to systematically replace biased verbal and written language is an essential step to providing equitable care.Methods: We designed and implemented an interactive workshop to teach health care professionals a framework to identify and replace stigmatizing language in clinical practice. The workshop included a reflective exercise, role-play, brief didactic session, and case-based discussion. We developed the program for a broad target audience of providers and initially delivered it at three academic conferences. We used descriptive statistics to analyze Likert-style items on course evaluations and identified themes in open-text responses.Results: A total of 66 participants completed course evaluations; most believed the workshop met its objectives (4.8 out of 5.0) and strongly agreed that they would apply skills learned (4.8). Participants planned to incorporate reflection into their verbal and written language. Potential barriers to applying course content included perceived difficulty in changing entrenched practice habits, burnout, and fatigue. Suggestions for improvement included more time for group discussions and strategies to teach skills to colleagues.Discussion: Participants found the course material highly engaging and relevant to their clinical practice. Learners left the workshop feeling motivated to engage in more mindful word choice and to share key concepts with their colleagues.

    View details for DOI 10.15766/mep_2374-8265.11115

    View details for PubMedID 33768147

  • Neuroplasticity: The Other Side of the Coin. Pediatric neurology Pal, R. n., Elbers, J. n. 2018

    View details for PubMedID 29685608

  • Cervical Puncture to Deliver Nusinersen in Patients with Spinal Muscular Atrophy and no Lumbar Access Neurology Veerapandiyan, A., Pal, R., DAmbrosio, S., Young, I., Eichinger, K., Collins, E., Westesson, P., Kwon, J., Ciafaloni, E. 2018; 90 (15)
  • Beyond the Classic VTA: Extended Amygdala Projections to DA-Striatal Paths in the Primate NEUROPSYCHOPHARMACOLOGY Fudge, J. L., Kelly, E. A., Pal, R., Bedont, J. L., Park, L., Ho, B. 2017; 42 (8): 1563–76


    The central extended amygdala (CEA) has been conceptualized as a 'macrosystem' that regulates various stress-induced behaviors. Consistent with this, the CEA highly expresses corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF), an important modulator of stress responses. Stress alters goal-directed responses associated with striatal paths, including maladaptive responses such as drug seeking, social withdrawal, and compulsive behavior. CEA inputs to the midbrain dopamine (DA) system are positioned to influence striatal functions through mesolimbic DA-striatal pathways. However, the structure of this amygdala-CEA-DA neuron path to the striatum has been poorly characterized in primates. In primates, we combined neuronal tracer injections into various arms of the circuit through specific DA subpopulations to assess: (1) whether the circuit connecting amygdala, CEA, and DA cells follows CEA intrinsic organization, or a more direct topography involving bed nucleus vs central nucleus divisions; (2) CRF content of the CEA-DA path; and (3) striatal subregions specifically involved in CEA-DA-striatal loops. We found that the amygdala-CEA-DA path follows macrostructural subdivisions, with the majority of input/outputs converging in the medial central nucleus, the sublenticular extended amygdala, and the posterior lateral bed nucleus of the stria terminalis. The proportion of CRF+ outputs is >50%, and mainly targets the A10 parabrachial pigmented nucleus (PBP) and A8 (retrorubal field, RRF) neuronal subpopulations, with additional inputs to the dorsal A9 neurons. CRF-enriched CEA-DA projections are positioned to influence outputs to the 'limbic-associative' striatum, which is distinct from striatal regions targeted by DA cells lacking CEA input. We conclude that the concept of the CEA is supported on connectional grounds, and that CEA termination over the PBP and RRF neuronal populations can influence striatal circuits involved in associative learning.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/npp.2017.38

    View details for Web of Science ID 000403235600002

    View details for PubMedID 28220796

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5518904