New Neurochip Listens Closer Than Ever To Brain Cells Communicating

Atheistextremist
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New Neurochip Listens Closer Than Ever To Brain Cells Communicating

 

An updated version of a neurochip can monitor brain cells’ communications at the clearest resolution yet, according to scientists in Canada. It’s cellular-scale mind-reading — or mind-listening, to be more precise.

The team at the University of Calgary was one of a handful of groups to first demonstrate it was possible to wire neurons into a computer chip, thereby sensing brain cells’ electrical communications. The goal is an improved understanding of how brain cells talk to each other, which could help scientists can design new drugs and therapies for neurological disorders.

Now, UC professor Naweed Syed’s research team has an updated neurochip that drills down into the brain’s smallest, most complex communication systems — the level of ion channels and synaptic potential, according to a University of Calgary news release.

The team embedded a recording device beneath the neurochip, and developed an amplification system that allows them to hear the electrical activity taking place among the cells.

Brain cells communicate through electrical and chemical signals. Connections between synapses pass along chemical signals; electrical signals travel through ion channels, which are essentially gateways on the cell surface.

Understanding this cellular communication could help scientists develop better drugs, repair damaged neurons and even improve future neurochip implants that would operate brain-controlled artificial limbs.

If scientists can “hear” what the cells are saying, they can quickly test the efficacy of drugs for patients with various brain disorders, Syed says.

The research was reported early online this week in the journal Biomedical Microdevices.

 

http://www.popsci.com.au/2010/08/new-neurochip-listens-closer-than-ever-to-brain-cells-communicating/

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


Atheistextremist
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We're arguing elsewhere on the forum about

 

the philosophical issues surrounding initial world view - the wellspring of reason if you like - that allows humans to judge data they gather in reality and assign it value using a mental system christians say is not subject to scrutiny using reason. There's the thinking in my mind that this reason is not innate or original but cultural and that like morality, we learn how to look at the world by interacting with elders, with earlier knowledge and our own environment. It's a simple observation but reason is demonstrably the property of a brain dependent on an initial universe for its existence.

The few points I wanted to make here were that regardless of your position, rationalist or christian, multiple world views are required in order to perceive the complex strangeness of reality - not just a single closed theistic or atheist view. Do you measure the world physically with scales and a tape measure or do you try to explain it using wave theory?

Additionally, I contend that a theistic world view, by default, leaves questions unanswered, depending for its currency on what science does not know. The amplification of the apparent pre-existence of reason is, therefore, exploitation of a gap.

I would say a universal theistic world view could not lead to research like this synapse-reading neurochip. Most importantly though, I think this research shows that as we look to 'prove' our efforts to unravel the secrets of reality, including the nature of the brain and of human reason, the best tool we have is naturalistic empiricism.

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


cj
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Possibilities - wow.

Possibilities - wow.


v4ultingbassist
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cj wrote:Possibilities -

cj wrote:

Possibilities - wow.

 

The possibilities are terrifyingly awesome.


Luminon
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v4ultingbassist wrote:cj

v4ultingbassist wrote:
cj wrote:
Possibilities - wow.
The possibilities are terrifyingly awesome.
What are the possibilities? It doesn't look like this chip can scan the brain as a whole. Does it scan enough to be useful? Do they have to drill a hole into skull, to listen to the neurons?

Some day I might want to see what my brain is doing, because I suspect it's doing something else than most of brains, so I'd like to know in advance what is it about.

 

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


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The Neurochip

Facinating read. There was a book written on this, short story. The Neurochip America The Enslaved