Spin-Mediated Consciousness Theory
The spin-mediated consciousness theory is a theory that says quantum spin is the seat of consciousness and the linchpin between mind and the brain, that is, spin is the mind-pixel. According to this theory, consciousness is intrinsically connected to the spin process and emerges from the collective dynamics of spin states and the unity of mind is achieved by quantum entanglement of these mind-pixels.
This theory was initially proposed by biophysicist Huping Hu with his collaborator Maoxin Wu. It is a tentative hypothesis as are all current hypotheses about consciousness. The starting point is the fact that spin is basic quantum bit ("qubit") for encoding information and, on the other hand, neural membranes and proteins are saturated with nuclear spin carrying nuclei and form the matrix of brain electrical activities. Indeed, spin is embedded in the microscopic structure of spacetime as reflected by Dirac equation and is likely more fundamental than spacetime itself as implicated by Roger Penrose’s work. In the David Hestenes picture the zitterbewegung associated with spin was shown to be responsible for the quantum effects of the fermion. Further, in the David Bohm picture the internal motion associated with spin has been shown to be responsible for the quantum potential which, in turn, is responsible for quantum effects. Thus, if one adopts the minority quantum mind view, nuclear spins and possibly unpaired electron spins become natural candidates for mind-pixels.
Applying these ideas to the particular structures and dynamics of the brain, they theorize that human brain works as follows: Through action potential modulated nuclear spin interactions and paramagnetic O2/NO driven activations, the nuclear spins inside neural membranes and proteins form various entangled quantum states the dynamics of which produces consciousness and have effects through spin chemistry on classical neural activities thus influencing the neural networks of the brain.
As with other quantum mind theories, decoherence is a major concern as pointed out by Max Tegmark but may not be insurmountable. They suggest that the solutions to the decoherence challenge lie with quantum entanglement.
Experimentally, they recently contemplated from the perspective of their theory on the possibility of entangling the quantum entities inside the brain with those in an external anaesthetic sample and carried out experiments toward that end. They reported that applying magnetic pulses to the brain when a general anaesthetic sample was placed in between caused the brain to feel the effect of said anaesthetic for several hours after the treatment as if the test subject had actually inhaled the same. The brain effect was said to be consistently reproducible. Further, they claims that they have verified that the said brain effect was the consequence of quantum entanglement between quantum entities inside the brain and those of the chemical substance under study induced by the photons of the magnetic pulses or applied lights. They suggest that the said quantum entities inside the brain are likely nuclear or electronic spins which, if further verified, will provide experimental support to their theory.
- Quantum mind
- Space-time theories of consciousness
- Electromagnetic theories of consciousness
- Wikibook on consciousness
- Hu,H & Wu, M, (2006)"Nonlocal effects of chemical substances on the brain produced through quantum entanglement" Progress in Physics v3: 20-26.
- Hu,H & Wu, M, (2006)"Photon induced non-local effect of general anesthetics on the brain" NeuroQuantology 4: 17-31.
- Hu,H & Wu, M, (2006)"Thinking outside the box: the essence and implications of quantum entanglement" NeuroQuantology 4: 5-16.
- Hu,H & Wu, M,(2004)"Action potential modulation of neural spin networks suggests possible role of spin in memory and consciousness" NeuroQuantology 2: 309-317.
- Hu,H & Wu, M, (2004)"Spin-mediated consciousness theory: possible roles of neural membrane nuclear spin ensembles and paramagnetic oxygen" Medical Hypotheses, 63: 633-646.
- Hu,H & Wu, M, (2004)"Spin as primordial self-referential process driving quantum mechanics, spacetime dynamics and consciousness" NeuroQuantology 2: 41-49.
- Hu,H & Wu, M, (2002)"Spin-Mediated Consciousness Theory: Possible Roles of Oxygen Unpaired Electronic Spins and Neural Membrane Nuclear Spin Ensemble in Memory and Consciousness"arXiv:quant-ph/020868.
- Hu,H & Wu, M, (2001)"Mechanism of anesthetic action: oxygen pathway perturbation hypothesis" Medical Hypotheses 57: 619-627 arXiv:physics/0101083