Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
04-02-2013, 11:54 AM
Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
This thread ties in a bit with the chance, free will and free choice thread but I felt it was worthy of a new thread.

One of the main arguments against pre-determinism and determinism is that the quantum world is full of uncertainty and events at this scale are the result of a range of probabilities. For example you can look at the double slit experiment, where a particle lands after passing through a slit(s) is uncertain, but we know the probability of it hitting certain areas.

How do you think these quantum uncertainties would influence/effect the brain? In turn making us slightly less of a result of cause and effect, and more a result of (apparent) randomness.

This question requires some understanding of how the brain works, but I'm interested in reading opinions from everyone.

2.5 billion seconds total
1.67 billion seconds conscious

Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like Adenosis's post
05-02-2013, 12:39 AM
RE: Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
I'm sure if there are parallel, branching universes, these quantum fluctuations give rise to different outcomes, and actions taken by your body.

But even if there are not parallel realities, I think we just don't understand quantum fluctuations enough. I believe that even at that scale, there are forces determining what we now perceive to be random. It seems to me that a "random", spontaneously generated particle in a vacuum has had some previous event as its cause.

That being said, I like the idea of parallel universes as envisioned through string or m-theory.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like WeAreTheCosmos's post
05-02-2013, 11:52 AM
RE: Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
Consider

Isn't it only seemingly random because we haven't worked out how to model it yet?

I'm not convinced yet that there are such things as randomly generated particles.

I think we are just observing particles that are passing fleeting through our timeline.

I'm referring to my, as yet unchallenged (though I have written about it three times already) hypothesis that the multiple universes exist in the same space dimensions as we do but in a different time dimension.

Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like DLJ's post
05-02-2013, 02:18 PM
RE: Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
(05-02-2013 11:52 AM)DLJ Wrote:  Consider

Isn't it only seemingly random because we haven't worked out how to model it yet?

I'm not convinced yet that there are such things as randomly generated particles.

I think we are just observing particles that are passing fleeting through our timeline.

I'm referring to my, as yet unchallenged (though I have written about it three times already) hypothesis that the multiple universes exist in the same space dimensions as we do but in a different time dimension.
And then, if we try to define "random" we could end in a philosophical debate. What is random?
Maybe what we consider as random is just something we don't know (yet) how or why it happens.

"Random" as well as "infinity", speaking in math terms are just easy and cheap definitions for something
we don't know.

DISCLAIMER: If you find a message from me offensive, inappropriate, or disruptive, please ignore it.
If you don't know how to ignore a message, complain to me and I will be happy to demonstrate.

[Image: tta.php]
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like KVron's post
05-02-2013, 02:19 PM
RE: Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
(05-02-2013 02:18 PM)KVron Wrote:  
(05-02-2013 11:52 AM)DLJ Wrote:  Consider

Isn't it only seemingly random because we haven't worked out how to model it yet?

I'm not convinced yet that there are such things as randomly generated particles.

I think we are just observing particles that are passing fleeting through our timeline.

I'm referring to my, as yet unchallenged (though I have written about it three times already) hypothesis that the multiple universes exist in the same space dimensions as we do but in a different time dimension.
And then, if we try to define "random" we could end in a philosophical debate. What is random?
Maybe what we consider as random is just something we don't know (yet) how or why it happens.

"Random" as well as "infinity", speaking in math terms are just easy and cheap definitions for something
we don't know.


There is nothing cheap about infinity in mathematics.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
[Image: flagstiny%206.gif]
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
05-02-2013, 02:28 PM
RE: Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
Yes. Infinity has it's time and place. Dodgy

I think in the end, I just feel like I'm a secular person who has a skeptical eye toward any extraordinary claim, carefully examining any extraordinary evidence before jumping to conclusions. ~ Eric ~ My friend ... who figured it out.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like kim's post
05-02-2013, 06:23 PM
RE: Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
It would be interesting to find that quantum effects influence the structure and processing of the brain, but there is no evidence of this at this time. Moreover, the neurological pathways of very simple organisms have now been successfully mapped and modelled without any reference to quantum effects. The brain is a big parallel processor, so it is computationally difficult to model on a small number of CPU cores. This seems to be the main inhibitor to our effective modelling of more complex neural systems at present.

Give me your argument in the form of a published paper, and then we can start to talk.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Hafnof's post
05-02-2013, 07:11 PM
RE: Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
I know that quantum mechanics describes very tiny things. However a neuron is made up of hundreds or thousands of atoms, and fail to see how quantum mechanics would apply.

Quantum mechanics may explain certain atomic interactions, but I think chemistry can explain the majority of phenomena in the brain.

Member of the Cult of Reason

The atheist is a man who destroys the imaginary things which afflict the human race, and so leads men back to nature, to experience and to reason.
-Baron d'Holbach-
Bitcion:1DNeQMswMdvx4xLPP6qNE7RkeTwXGC7Bzp
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like fstratzero's post
05-02-2013, 09:14 PM
RE: Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
(05-02-2013 12:39 AM)WeAreTheCosmos Wrote:  I'm sure if there are parallel, branching universes, these quantum fluctuations give rise to different outcomes, and actions taken by your body.

But even if there are not parallel realities, I think we just don't understand quantum fluctuations enough. I believe that even at that scale, there are forces determining what we now perceive to be random. It seems to me that a "random", spontaneously generated particle in a vacuum has had some previous event as its cause.

That being said, I like the idea of parallel universes as envisioned through string or m-theory.

I completely agree. It would be interesting to find out that we have multiple parallel universes stacked ontop of ours, maybe that would explain 'dark matter', could be the unaccounted mass causing the extra gravity. The theory that quantum fluctuations cause the variations in parallel universes is an interesting one. I was doing some reading and I now it is looking more and more like quantum mechanics has an impact on the brain. I guess it all depends on whether these phenomena are in fact random or if there is cause that we just don't know and understand.

There could also be a multiverse where universes are not stacked on top of each other but in other locations in the space beyond our universe, the space of the multiverse (which seems likely to me, why only one big bang?). M-theory predicts 11 dimensions (right?) and that seven of the dimensions are curled up in quantum space, so perhaps this multiverse is space in which the extra dimensions are not curled up. There may be universes whose physical laws differ from ours, which is why our laws have the appearance of being fine tuned. Other universes that share the same laws as ours have the potential to run a course very similar to ours. It depends on how many universes are in the multiverse if it in fact exists.


(05-02-2013 06:23 PM)Hafnof Wrote:  It would be interesting to find that quantum effects influence the structure and processing of the brain, but there is no evidence of this at this time. Moreover, the neurological pathways of very simple organisms have now been successfully mapped and modelled without any reference to quantum effects. The brain is a big parallel processor, so it is computationally difficult to model on a small number of CPU cores. This seems to be the main inhibitor to our effective modelling of more complex neural systems at present.
(05-02-2013 07:11 PM)fstratzero Wrote:  I know that quantum mechanics describes very tiny things. However a neuron is made up of hundreds or thousands of atoms, and fail to see how quantum mechanics would apply.

Quantum mechanics may explain certain atomic interactions, but I think chemistry can explain the majority of phenomena in the brain.

Having a map doesn't mean we understand it. We understand very little about the brain compared to what we could know. The neurotransmitters are comprised of few atoms. Even Zinc is a neurotransmitter, I have yet to find any information on how many atoms of zinc is but since there are two valence electrons I'm assuming four? (Chemists can correct me here if I'm wrong). The brain isn't one massive molecule. It is comprised of trillions of molecules, and the smaller the molecule the more quantum mechanical behaviours it exhibits. So the randomness of quantum mechanics could theoretically change whether a neuron fires off or not based on how many of the neurotransmitters attach to receptors. Add up a lifetime of changes here and there, and depending on how many changes there are, you could get a completely different person.

Researchers have sent molecules containing either 58 or 114 atoms through the so-called "double-slit experiment,"showing that they cause an interference pattern that can only be explained if the particles act like waves of water, rather than tiny marbles.


Phthalocyanine (what they used in the double slit experiment)
[Image: Phthalocyanine.svg]


Dopamine
[Image: Dopamine2.svg]


Serotonin
[Image: images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSDLAxDI_7nyfP500B-yJ-...qiIpf2t6cF]

2.5 billion seconds total
1.67 billion seconds conscious

Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like Adenosis's post
05-02-2013, 09:17 PM (This post was last modified: 05-02-2013 09:23 PM by fstratzero.)
RE: Quantum mechanical effects in the Brain
(05-02-2013 09:14 PM)Aspchizo Wrote:  
(05-02-2013 12:39 AM)WeAreTheCosmos Wrote:  I'm sure if there are parallel, branching universes, these quantum fluctuations give rise to different outcomes, and actions taken by your body.

But even if there are not parallel realities, I think we just don't understand quantum fluctuations enough. I believe that even at that scale, there are forces determining what we now perceive to be random. It seems to me that a "random", spontaneously generated particle in a vacuum has had some previous event as its cause.

That being said, I like the idea of parallel universes as envisioned through string or m-theory.

I completely agree. It would be interesting to find out that we have multiple parallel universes stacked ontop of ours, maybe that would explain 'dark matter', could be the unaccounted mass causing the extra gravity. The theory that quantum fluctuations cause the variations in parallel universes is an interesting one. I was doing some reading and I now it is looking more and more like quantum mechanics has an impact on the brain. I guess it all depends on whether these phenomena are in fact random or if there is cause that we just don't know and understand.

There could also be a multiverse where universes are not stacked on top of each other but in other locations in the space beyond our universe, the space of the multiverse (which seems likely to me, why only one big bang?). M-theory predicts 11 dimensions (right?) and that seven of the dimensions are curled up in quantum space, so perhaps this multiverse is space in which the extra dimensions are not curled up. There may be universes whose physical laws differ from ours, which is why our laws have the appearance of being fine tuned. Other universes that share the same laws as ours have the potential to run a course very similar to ours. It depends on how many universes are in the multiverse if it in fact exists.


(05-02-2013 06:23 PM)Hafnof Wrote:  It would be interesting to find that quantum effects influence the structure and processing of the brain, but there is no evidence of this at this time. Moreover, the neurological pathways of very simple organisms have now been successfully mapped and modelled without any reference to quantum effects. The brain is a big parallel processor, so it is computationally difficult to model on a small number of CPU cores. This seems to be the main inhibitor to our effective modelling of more complex neural systems at present.
(05-02-2013 07:11 PM)fstratzero Wrote:  I know that quantum mechanics describes very tiny things. However a neuron is made up of hundreds or thousands of atoms, and fail to see how quantum mechanics would apply.

Quantum mechanics may explain certain atomic interactions, but I think chemistry can explain the majority of phenomena in the brain.

Having a map doesn't mean we understand it. We understand very little about the brain compared to what we could know. The neurotransmitters are comprised of few atoms. Even Zinc is a neurotransmitter, I have yet to find any information on how many atoms of zinc is but since there are two valence electrons I'm assuming four? (Chemists can correct me here if I'm wrong). The brain isn't one massive molecule. It is comprised of trillions of molecules, and the smaller the molecule the more quantum mechanical behaviours it exhibits. So the randomness of quantum mechanics could theoretically change whether a neuron fires off or not based on how many of the neurotransmitters attach to receptors. Add up a lifetime of changes here and there, and depending on how many changes there are, you could get a completely different person.

Researchers have sent molecules containing either 58 or 114 atoms through the so-called "double-slit experiment,"showing that they cause an interference pattern that can only be explained if the particles act like waves of water, rather than tiny marbles.


Phthalocyanine (what they used in the double slit experiment)
[Image: Phthalocyanine.svg]


Dopamine
[Image: Dopamine2.svg]


Serotonin
[Image: images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSDLAxDI_7nyfP500B-yJ-...qiIpf2t6cF]
Well then I am wrong. This is interesting, I'll have to read more.
http://www.nature.com/nnano/journal/v7/n...12.34.html

It's really annoying that you have to pay to get access to the articles.

Member of the Cult of Reason

The atheist is a man who destroys the imaginary things which afflict the human race, and so leads men back to nature, to experience and to reason.
-Baron d'Holbach-
Bitcion:1DNeQMswMdvx4xLPP6qNE7RkeTwXGC7Bzp
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply
Forum Jump: