ResearchPad - Sociology and Political Science Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Development of a Customizable Programme for Improving Interprofessional Team Meetings: An Action Research Approach]]>


Interprofessional teamwork is increasingly necessary in primary care to meet the needs of people with complex care demands. Needs assessment shows that this requires efficient interprofessional team meetings, focusing on patients’ personal goals. The aim of this study was to develop a programme to improve the efficiency and patient-centredness of such meetings.


Action research approach: a first draft of the programme was developed, and iteratively used and evaluated by three primary care teams. Data were collected using observations, interviews and a focus group, and analysed using directed content analysis.


The final programme comprises a framework to reflect on team functioning, and training activities supplemented by a toolbox. Training is intended for the chairperson and a co-chair, and aims at organizing and structuring meetings, and enhancing patient-centredness. Our findings emphasize the essential role of the team’s chairperson, who, in addition to technically structuring meetings, should act as a change agent guiding team development.


Findings show that the programme should be customizable to each individual team’s context and participants’ learning objectives. Becoming acquainted with new structures can be considered a growth process, in which teams have to find their way, with the chairperson as change agent.

<![CDATA[Explaining Racial Disparities in Amputation Rates for the Treatment of Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) Using Decomposition Methods]]>


While studies have documented racial and ethnic disparities in amputation rates for patients with peripheral artery disease (PAD), the importance of specific factors has not been quantified. This research seeks to provide such evidence and to quantify how much of the difference reflects observable versus unexplained factors.


This study used the nationally representative HCUP inpatient database from 2006 to 2013 for patients with a primary diagnosis of PAD who were either Caucasian, African-American, or Hispanic. Multivariable logistic regression models were estimated to identify the determinants of amputation rates.


Multivariable results revealed that African-Americans and Hispanics are approximately twice as likely to be amputated as are Caucasians. Observed factors in the models collectively account for 51 to 55 % of the disparities for African-Americans and 64 to 69 % for Hispanics. The results suggest that African-Americans and Hispanics have less access to care, because they are being admitted when sicker and more likely on an emergent basis.


Racial and ethnic disparities in amputation rates are substantial, with disease severity and hospital admission source being key factors.

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s40615-016-0261-9) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

<![CDATA[Monuments to Academic Carelessness]]> <![CDATA[Theoretical foundations guiding culture change: The work of the Partnerships in Dementia Care Alliance]]>

Longstanding concerns about quality care provision, specifically in the area of long-term care, have prompted calls for changing the culture of care to reflect more client-driven and relationship-centred models. Despite an increase in culture change initiatives in both Canada and the United States, there is insufficient information about the theories and approaches that guide culture change. The purpose of this paper is to describe a culture change initiative currently underway in Canada, the Partnerships in Dementia Care Alliance, and the theoretical foundations informing our work. More specifically, we describe how the theoretical and philosophical underpinnings of the Alzheimer Disease and Related Dementias framework, the authentic partnership approach, participatory action research and Appreciative Inquiry have been integrated to guide a culture change process that encourages working collaboratively, thinking and doing differently and re-imagining new possibilities for changing the culture of dementia care.

<![CDATA[Sensitive Spectroscopic Detection of Large and Denatured Protein Aggregates in Solution by Use of the Fluorescent Dye Nile Red]]>

The fluorescent dye Nile red was used as a probe for the sensitive detection of large, denatured aggregates of the model protein β-galactosidase (E. coli) in solution. Aggregates were formed by irreversible heat denaturation of β-galactosidase below and above the protein’s unfolding temperature of 57.4°C, and the presence of aggregates in heated solutions was confirmed by static light scattering. Interaction of Nile red with β-galactosidase aggregates led to a shift of the emission maximum (λmax) from 660 to 611 nm, and to an increase of fluorescence intensity. Time-resolved fluorescence and fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) measurements showed that Nile red detected large aggregates with hydrodynamic radii around 130 nm. By steady-state fluorescence measurements, it was possible to detect 1 nM of denatured and aggregated β-galactosidase in solution. The comparison with size exclusion chromatography (SEC) showed that native β-galactosidase and small aggregates thereof had no substantial effect on the fluorescence of Nile red. Large aggregates were not detected by SEC, because they were excluded from the column. The results with β-galactosidase demonstrate the potential of Nile red for developing complementary analytical methods that overcome the size limitations of SEC, and can detect the formation of large protein aggregates at early stages.

<![CDATA[Involvement of TonEBP/NFAT5 in osmoadaptative response of human retinal pigmented epithelial cells to hyperosmolar stress]]>

Purpose: Macular edema, a frequently encountered complication of diabetic retinopathy (DR), results from alterations of the blood retinal barrier (BRB) and leads to modifications of the retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE) functions. Osmolar changes of the surrounding medium could be responsible for modifications of the RPE functions leading to disturbance of retinal homeostasis. The expression, activation and function of the key hyperosmolar response factor Tonicity Enhancer Binding Protein (TonEBP also called nuclear factor of activated T-cell 5 - NFTA5) was investigated in ARPE-19 cells, derived from human RPE, in response to hyperosmolar stimulation.

Methods: ARPE-19 cells were exposed to hyperosmolar medium. TonEBP mRNA and protein levels were quantified by qRT-PCR and semi-quantitative Western blot. TonEBP nuclear translocation was investigated by immunofluorescence. TonEBP transactivation activity was measured using a reported plasmid containing TonEBP binding sites.

Results: In response to hyperosmolar stimulation of ARPE-19 cells, a dose-dependent increase in TonEBP mRNA and protein levels, as well as TonEBP nuclear translocation were observed. TonEBP transactivation activity was further demonstrated using a reporter plasmid containing TonEBP binding sites. A dominant negative form of TonEBP abolished NaCl-induced increase in TonEBP transactivation activity, and inhibited the increase of the target genes aldose reductase and sodium-dependent taurine transporter mRNA levels. SB203580, an inhibitor of two of the p38 protein kinase’s isoforms (p38α and p38β) inhibited the TonEBP nuclear translocation and transactivation activity in ARPE-19 cells exposed to hyperosmolar stimulation.

Conclusions: Our data demonstrates the involvement of TonEBP in the mechanisms responsible for osmoadaptation to hyperosmolar stress in RPE cells. Given the emerging role of TonEBP in different pathological pathways, these data open new perspectives for the analysis of the mechanisms involved in the modification of functions of the RPE during macular edema.

<![CDATA[A sociological dilemma: Race, segregation and US sociology]]>

US sociology has been historically segregated in that, at least until the 1960s, there were two distinct institutionally organized traditions of sociological thought – one black and one white. For the most part, however, dominant historiographies have been silent on that segregation and, at best, reproduce it when addressing the US sociological tradition. This is evident in the rarity with which scholars such as WEB Du Bois, E Franklin Frazier, Oliver Cromwell Cox, or other ‘African American Pioneers of Sociology’, as Saint-Arnaud calls them, are presented as core sociological voices within histories of the discipline. This article addresses the absence of African American sociologists from the US sociological canon and, further, discusses the implications of this absence for our understanding of core sociological concepts. With regard to the latter, the article focuses in particular on the debates around equality and emancipation and discusses the ways in which our understanding of these concepts could be extended by taking into account the work of African American sociologists and their different interpretations of core themes.

<![CDATA[Developing a Reporting Guideline for Social and Psychological Intervention Trials]]>

Social and psychological interventions are often complex. Understanding randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of these complex interventions requires a detailed description of the interventions tested and the methods used to evaluate them; however, RCT reports often omit, or inadequately report, this information. Incomplete and inaccurate reporting hinders the optimal use of research, wastes resources, and fails to meet ethical obligations to research participants and consumers. In this article, we explain how reporting guidelines have improved the quality of reports in medicine and describe the ongoing development of a new reporting guideline for RCTs: Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials-SPI (an extension for social and psychological interventions). We invite readers to participate in the project by visiting our website, in order to help us reach the best-informed consensus on these guidelines (

<![CDATA[Fragment-based Binding Efficiency Indices in Bioactive Molecular Design: A Computational Approach to BACE-1 Inhibitors ]]>

One of the most important targets in Alzheimer disease is Beta site amyloid precursor protein cleaving enzyme-1 (BACE-1). It is a membrane associated protein and is one of the main enzymes responsible for amyloid β (Aβ) production. Up to now, a considerable number of peptidic and non-peptidic inhibitors of BACE-1 have been developed. Recently, small molecule BACE-1 inhibitors have attracted the attention of scientists, because peptidic inhibitors have many pharmacokinetic problems. In the present study, several small molecule BACE-1 inhibitors were extracted from Brookhaven Protein Databank (PDB) and subjected to dissection analysis to achieve constructing fragments. Atom type, hybridization, and bond order were considered for generated constitutional fragments (simplified structures). AutoDock version 4.2 was applied to dock various chemical fragments into BACE-1 active site. The benefits of such studies have been well revealed in previous reports. On the basis of obtained binding affinities, fragment-based ligand efficiency (LE) indices were estimated. These theoretical binding efficiencies were applied to further elucidate the key structural features of BACE-1 inhibitors. Typical results of the study were elucidated and we suggested the ways these findings might be beneficial to guide rational bioactive molecular developments. Our study confirmed that the evaluation of ligand-receptor interactions in terms of ligand efficiency indices (binding energy per atom and pKi per MW) could be a helpful strategy in structure-based drug discovery (SBDD) strategies.

<![CDATA[Trust in Nanotechnology? On Trust as Analytical Tool in Social Research on Emerging Technologies]]>

Trust has become an important aspect of evaluating the relationship between lay public and technology implementation. Experiences have shown that a focus on trust provides a richer understanding of reasons for backlashes of technology in society than a mere focus of public understanding of risks and science communication. Therefore, trust is also widely used as a key concept for understanding and predicting trust or distrust in emerging technologies. But whereas trust broadens the scope for understanding established technologies with well-defined questions and controversies, it easily fails to do so with emerging technologies, where there are no shared questions, a lack of public familiarity with the technology in question, and a restricted understanding amongst social researchers as to where distrust is likely to arise and how and under which form the technology will actually be implemented. Rather contrary, ‘trust’ might sometimes even direct social research into fixed structures that makes it even more difficult for social research to provide socially robust knowledge. This article therefore suggests that if trust is to maintain its important role in evaluating emerging technologies, the approach has to be widened and initially focus not on people’s motivations for trust, but rather the object of trust it self, as to predicting how and where distrust might appear, how the object is established as an object of trust, and how it is established in relation with the public.