The brain's Dark Energy- Article Scientific American

(Gavin Ritz 2010.03.13.17.29NZT)

This month’s feature
article in the SCIAM is about the brain’s DMN (Default Mode
Network). Basically this article by Prof Raichle says that this network controls relationships between the different
systems of the brain. Some interesting upshots of DMN

  •  The brain is never
    
    switched off
  •  Energy reduction in the
    
    brain in some cases where tasks are being carried out
  • Energy consumed in DMN is 20 tim es that used by brain when
    responding to external disturbance.
  •  Slow cortical
    
    potentials (SCP ) have
    an influential role in the DMN . (brain signalling from one neuron firing per 10 seconds to 100 cycles
    per second)
  •  Previous research
    
    pointing to noise in the brain is incorrect; this research shows that it’s
    not noise but the DMN.

This is interesting to me
as it somewhat strengthens my proposition that the reference signal can never be
zero at the highest level of PCT.

I came to this conclusion
because of the following points

  •  Complex organism are
    
    far from equilibrium systems, PCT is a far from equilibrium system only
    when there is a reference signal is (ie the asymmetry of the PCT model)
  •  Energy in a complex organism
    
    is always transforming and hence is a far from equilibrium system, the ATP
    Synthase molecule is never switched off in the brain cells.
  •  The nature of the
    
    PCT model is asymmetric due to the reference signal only, no reference signal
    no asymmetry nothing is happening- this state is impossible in living organisms

DMN I think adds more body to the proposition that reference
signals at the highest level can never be zero. My contention is that reference
signals at the highest level of PCT, due to the energy conversion in far-from-equilibrium
systems and DMN, can never be zero in fact are as the SCIAM
article points out highly energised.

Regards

Gavin

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