Neuromolecular Computing in Brain Evolution: Models and Methods
This article presents a rationale and suggests possible protocols for investigating evolutionary models of neuromolecular computing in humans and other animals. It begins with an historical overview of membrane and cytoskeleton models of possible computational relevance. A model of molecular computing in neurons is then presented. Its fundamental physical feature is a lateral concentration gradient of neural membrane lipids in an applied field during ion movement. It is proposed that electrostatic interactions between aligned and polarized ethenes of membrane-lipid diacyls and the charged amino-acid residues in an unfolded ion-channel protein regulate the rate of protein folding (ion-channel closing). In this manner, lipid-protein electrostatic interactions regulate neuron signaling. Suggested experimental protocols emphasizing fluorescence and ultrafast x-ray diffraction analyses of membrane models (micelles) based on tissue samples from different species are described at length. It is concluded that research of this type could add a valuable molecular dimension to classic neuroanatomical approaches traditionally pursued in evolutionary studies.
Neuromolecular computing, membrane, quantum computing, cytoskeleton, brain evolution
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