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    ‘That so Ancient a City Should Have Elected a Woman as Mayor Is a Sign of the times’: Women and Local Government in Worcester before 1939

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    This article explores women’s experiences of local government in Worcester between 1907 and 1939. The city saw a limited suffrage movement, and to date has never elected a female MP. Yet while women in Worcester arguably played little role in ‘national’ politics, they were active in local government, first through wartime local authority committees, and then, in the interwar years, when seeking election as Labour, Liberal, Conservative or Independent candidates, with Conservative women being most successful. Drawing on city council records and local newspaper reporting, the article considers the ways in which women made an impact on Worcester’s government, particularly as elected councillors. Some women were also involved with more ceremonial – and consequently more visible – roles in local government, though these were generally the preserve of elite women. As such, the article contributes to wider debates about the changing nature of women’s political activism post-enfranchisement

    Designing for Everyone: Can the principles of dementia friendly design inform design for neurodiversity in healthcare settings?

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    There is increasing interest in the UK in developing environments that support people who are neurodiverse. This paper reports on a project to develop a cognitively supportive environmental assessment tool to improve the design of health centres, where the majority of NHS consultations take place, for all users including people living with dementia and those who are neurodiverse. A three stage process was used: a literature review; the development of a matrix of key design features for people living with dementia, autism and other neurodiverse conditions; and the development of an environmental assessment tool and guide for users which included easy read versions to maximise service user involvement. The overarching concepts of dementia friendly design can be adapted to create design for everyone including those who are neurodiverse. There is a paucity of research in environmental design for primary care from the patient’s perspective, and more generally further research on design for adults with learning disabilities and autism is needed. The tools are available free to download. With adaptation, they have potential applicability across health and care settings. This project has confirmed that the principles of dementia friendly design are applicable, with modifications, to a wider group of neurodiverse people. Critically, each person’s response to sensory stimuli is individual rather than determined by their condition

    Can philosophy benefit nurses and/or nursing? Heidegger and Strauss, problems of knowledge and context

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    When researchers and scholars claim their work is based on a philosophical idea or a philosopher’s corpus of ideas (and theory/theorist can be substituted for philosophy/philosopher), and when “basing” signifies something significant rather than subsidiary or inconsequential, what level of understanding and expertise can readers reasonably expect authors to possess? In this paper some of the uses to which philosophical ideas and named philosophers (Martin Heidegger and Leo Strauss) are put in exegesis is critiqued. Considering problematic instances of idea-name use may enable the question: “Can philosophy benefit nurses and/or nursing?” to be better understood if not answered

    Do you even exercise, ref? Exploring habits of Spanish basketball referees during practice and matches

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    Abstract Background: Basketball referees are a vital part of the organised competition system, although they remain an "outgroup" in sport. While physical development and fitness programming are deemed necessary for basketball officiating excellence, there is a paucity of literature exploring strategies for physical fitness management in this population. Methods: This research was a nationwide cross-sectional, self-administered online survey conducted in 2021. A sample of 628 (531 males, 97 females) referees from 18 regional referee organisations in Spain provided individual responses to gather information on demographic details, level of participation in refereeing, physical fitness practices, and match-day exercise-based regimens. The data were described using summary statistics, and the associations of the assessed variables were subsequently calculated using contingency tables. Results: Our findings reveal that a large fraction of the Spanish basketball referee population focuses on aerobic (83%) and strength (73.6%) activities, while less attention is paid to speed (36.9%) and flexibility (23.2%), and agility, coordination, and balance tasks are somewhat overlooked. No significant differences were observed among the referee categories regarding weekly training days or session duration, with most training for 15-60 min per session. Elite referees were more likely to hire personal trainers and engage in strength and flexibility exercises. Sub-elite referees showed a higher tendency to perform stretching and joint mobility activities post-match, while regional referees did so less frequently. Approximately 30.7% of referees across all competitive levels engaged in re-warm-up (RW-U) activities, with stretching and joint mobility being the most prevalent. Conclusions: Spanish basketball referees participate in routine physical exercise and fitness practices, irrespective of their competition level. While warm-up activities are prevalent, some sub-elite and regional referees do not consistently perform them, and re-warm-up routines are not extensively embraced

    In silico analyzes of the involvement of GPR55, CB1R and TRPV1: response to THC, contribution to temporal lobe epilepsy, structural modeling and updated evolution

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    Introduction: The endocannabinoid (eCB) system is named after the discovery that endogenous cannabinoids bind to the same receptors as the phytochemical compounds found in Cannabis. While endogenous cannabinoids include anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), exogenous phytocannabinoids include Δ-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). These compounds finely tune neurotransmission following synapse activation, via retrograde signaling that activates cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1R) and/or transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily V member 1 (TRPV1). Recently, the eCB system has been linked to several neurological diseases, such as neuro-ocular abnormalities, pain insensitivity, migraine, epilepsy, addiction and neurodevelopmental disorders. In the current study, we aim to: (i) highlight a potential link between the eCB system and neurological disorders, (ii) assess if THC exposure alters the expression of eCB-related genes, and (iii) identify evolutionary-conserved residues in CB1R or TRPV1 in light of their function. Methods: To address this, we used several bioinformatic approaches, such as transcriptomic (Gene Expression Omnibus), protein–protein (STRING), phylogenic (BLASTP, MEGA) and structural (Phyre2, AutoDock, Vina, PyMol) analyzes. Results: Using RNA sequencing datasets, we did not observe any dysregulation of eCB-related transcripts in major depressive disorders, bipolar disorder or schizophrenia in the anterior cingulate cortex, nucleus accumbens or dorsolateral striatum. Following in vivo THC exposure in adolescent mice, GPR55 was significantly upregulated in neurons from the ventral tegmental area, while other transcripts involved in the eCB system were not affected by THC exposure. Our results also suggest that THC likely induces neuroinflammation following in vitro application on mice microglia. Significant downregulation of TPRV1 occurred in the hippocampi of mice in which a model of temporal lobe epilepsy was induced, confirming previous observations. In addition, several transcriptomic dysregulations were observed in neurons of both epileptic mice and humans, which included transcripts involved in neuronal death. When scanning known interactions for transcripts involved in the eCB system (n = 13), we observed branching between the eCB system and neurophysiology, including proteins involved in the dopaminergic system. Our protein phylogenic analyzes revealed that CB1R forms a clade with CB2R, which is distinct from related paralogues such as sphingosine-1-phosphate, receptors, lysophosphatidic acid receptors and melanocortin receptors. As expected, several conserved residues were identified, which are crucial for CB1R receptor function. The anandamide-binding pocket seems to have appeared later in evolution. Similar results were observed for TRPV1, with conserved residues involved in receptor activation. Conclusion: The current study found that GPR55 is upregulated in neurons following THC exposure, while TRPV1 is downregulated in temporal lobe epilepsy. Caution is advised when interpreting the present results, as we have employed secondary analyzes. Common ancestors for CB1R and TRPV1 diverged from jawless vertebrates during the late Ordovician, 450 million years ago. Conserved residues are identified, which mediate crucial receptor functions

    Selfing revealed potential for higher yield performance than backcrossing among tomato segregating populations of Solanum lycopersicum × S. pimpinellifolium crosses under tropical humid climate

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    The objectives of this study were to assess and identify new source of phenotypic variability among F3 and BC1F2 tomato populations, and apply genotype by yield*trait (GYT) biplots for population and line selection based on multiple traits. Four diverse cultivated parents (‘CLN2498D’ [D] and ‘CLN2417H’ [H] from Ethiopia; ‘UC Dan INDIA’ [U] and ‘Tima’ [T] from Nigeria), and wild parent ‘LA2093’ [W] were used to generate 276 potential breeding lines. The lines were categorized into eight populations (‘pop_1_W/H1’, ‘pop_2_W/H2’, ‘pop_3_W/D1’, ‘pop_4_W/D2’, ‘pop_5_W/T1’, ‘pop_6_W/T2’, ‘pop_7_W/U1’, and ‘pop_8_W/U2’), and evaluated twice in the field using 19 × 15 alpha-lattice design with two replicates. Significant differences were observed among lines and populations for all yield enhancing traits. ‘Pop_1_W/H1’, ‘pop_4_W/D2’ and ‘pop_6_W/T2’ expressed the highest genetic divergence for plant height, number of leaves, total flower and fruit number, and fruit weight. GYT biplots revealed that all yield*trait interactions had a positive correlation with each other. F3 populations, ‘pop_5_W/T1’ and ‘pop_1_W/H1’ exhibited the best performance for majority of the yield*trait combinations. Hierarchical clustering on principal components (HCPC) revealed overlapping lines (70.58% of Cluster D lines) and (54.05% of Cluster U lines) from the two F3 populations. In BC1F2 population, 32.35% of the 34 original lines of Cluster D and 48.48% of Cluster T lines overlapped between Clusters D and T, while 18.18% of Cluster T lines and 8.82% of Cluster H lines were transgressive between Clusters T and H. Transgressive segregants ‘0210U1’, ‘0211U1’, and ‘0171T1’ of selfed population using multivariate analysis were believed to represent potential sources of novel genetic variation for future tomato breeding

    The role of the analyst: Comparative analysis of Applied Performance Analyst job advertisements in the UK and Ireland (2021-2022)

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    This study examined the key roles, responsibilities, and skills sought when advertising for the recruitment of Applied Performance Analysts (APAs) in UK and Irish professional sports settings. Deductive and inductive content analysis of the job descriptions and personal specifications of 130 job advertisements from 2021 to 2022 across the entire APA spectrum was undertaken. This encompassed 21 different specific role titles. Despite unified advertisement formats, noticeable variations emerged regarding length and content focus, regardless of First-team or Academy positions. The findings revealed a greater focus on Sports Performance Analysis (SPA), sports, and technical expertise coupled with professional behaviours in APA advertisements, with less priority shown to relationship-building skills. First-team positions particularly requested more skill-specific analysis expertise. Academy APAs were expected to focus on collecting data, facilitating feedback, in addition to creating and approving infrastructure for various age groups. Comparatively, First-team roles involved more complex data analysis tasks, including interrogating data, trend identification, and stakeholder reporting. The analysis not only highlights role discrepancies but also serves as a potential framework for employers when creating job advertisements, assists applicants in identifying the key skills to highlight, and informs curriculum and training programmes to cover the entire APA spectrum

    Substance use and substance use disorders in relation to COVID-19: qualitative experiences of people who use drugs in Jordan

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    Background Monitoring substance use and Substance Use Disorders (SUD) during global pandemics is essential, as individuals who engage in such activities may be at greater risk for infections as well as economic and social complications. This study aimed to describe the impact of COVID-19 on substance use and SUD, any changes that occurred in patterns of use, and services provided, the main challenges faced and if and how they had been overcome. Methods A qualitative study consisting of face-to-face semi-structured interviews with a sample of SUD patients from 3 main addiction treatment centers in Jordan. Recruitment stopped once data saturation was reached. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using NVivo-R1 software, and thematic analysis was undertaken. Results A total of 17 individuals were interviewed (male, aged 19–52 years). Five key themes emerged from a narrative analysis: Impact of COVID-19 on the availability of substances, the pattern of use, social life and its relation to SUD, impact on tobacco smoking, and finally on the user’s health, awareness and hygienic measures. Conclusions This study provided in-depth information to inform, support, and customize the design of interventions to mitigate the negative effects of substance use and SUD-related outcomes in a rapidly changing pandemic

    Spare a thought for the lonely: the role of palliative care

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