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Sample records for human consciousness enables

  1. Global workspace dynamics: Cortical "binding and propagation enables conscious contents.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernard J Baars

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available A global workspace is a hub of binding and propagation in a population of loosely coupled signaling elements. Global workspace (GW architectures recruit many distributed, specialized agents to help resolve focal ambiguities. In the brain, conscious experiences may reflect a global workspace function. For animals the natural world is full of fitness-related ambiguities, suggesting a general adaptive pressure for brains to resolve focal ambiguities quickly and accurately. In humans and related species the cortico-thalamic (C-T core is believed to underlie conscious aspects of perception, thinking, learning, feelings of knowing, emotions, imagery, working memory and executive control. The C-T core has many anatomical hubs, but conscious percepts are unitary and internally consistent at any given moment. The repertoire of conscious contents is a large, open set. These points suggest that a brain-based GW capacity cannot be localized in a single anatomical hub. Rather, it should be sought in a dynamic capacity for adaptive binding and propagation of neural signals over multi-hub networks. We refer to this as dynamic global workspace theory (dGW. In this view, conscious contents can arise in any region of the C-T core when multiple signal streams settle on a winner-take-all equilibrium. The resulting bound gestalt may ignite an any-to-many broadcast, lasting ~100-200 ms, and trigger widespread adaptation in established networks. Binding and broadcasting may involve theta/gamma or alpha/gamma phase coupling. Conscious contents (qualia may reflect their sources in cortex. Sensory percepts may bind and broadcast from posterior regions, while non-sensory feelings of knowing (FOKs may be frontotemporal. The small focal capacity of conscious contents may be the biological price to pay for global access. We propose that in the intact brain the hippocampal/rhinal complex may support conscious event organization as well as episodic memory coding.

  2. Global workspace dynamics: cortical "binding and propagation" enables conscious contents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baars, Bernard J; Franklin, Stan; Ramsoy, Thomas Zoega

    2013-01-01

    A global workspace (GW) is a functional hub of binding and propagation in a population of loosely coupled signaling elements. In computational applications, GW architectures recruit many distributed, specialized agents to cooperate in resolving focal ambiguities. In the brain, conscious experiences may reflect a GW function. For animals, the natural world is full of unpredictable dangers and opportunities, suggesting a general adaptive pressure for brains to resolve focal ambiguities quickly and accurately. GW theory aims to understand the differences between conscious and unconscious brain events. In humans and related species the cortico-thalamic (C-T) core is believed to underlie conscious aspects of perception, thinking, learning, feelings of knowing (FOK), felt emotions, visual imagery, working memory, and executive control. Alternative theoretical perspectives are also discussed. The C-T core has many anatomical hubs, but conscious percepts are unitary and internally consistent at any given moment. Over time, conscious contents constitute a very large, open set. This suggests that a brain-based GW capacity cannot be localized in a single anatomical hub. Rather, it should be sought in a functional hub - a dynamic capacity for binding and propagation of neural signals over multiple task-related networks, a kind of neuronal cloud computing. In this view, conscious contents can arise in any region of the C-T core when multiple input streams settle on a winner-take-all equilibrium. The resulting conscious gestalt may ignite an any-to-many broadcast, lasting ∼100-200 ms, and trigger widespread adaptation in previously established networks. To account for the great range of conscious contents over time, the theory suggests an open repertoire of binding coalitions that can broadcast via theta/gamma or alpha/gamma phase coupling, like radio channels competing for a narrow frequency band. Conscious moments are thought to hold only 1-4 unrelated items; this small

  3. The mechanism of humanization of globalistionion consciousness of humanity

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    R. M. Kolisnichenko

    2016-08-01

    Humanistic type of globalistion consciousness involves improving operations globalistion institutions of socialization to the level necessary for effective humanization of a globalistion public consciousness. Representatives of the humanistic type of globalistion consciousness consider it necessary to increase the volume of international aid allocated to media development, cultural industry, education in developing countries, the global establishment of democracy, the introduction of the world Court of Human Rights, to ensure the independence of political parties from the harmful influence of the business elite, the active involvement of institutions globalistion socialization to the targeted formation humanistic globalistion consciousness of the world population. It proved the urgent need for a global revision of the strategic approaches to qualitative development of globalistion institutions of socialization in the world to create an effective mechanism for the humanization of a globalistion consciousness of humanity.

  4. Co-evolution of human consciousness and language (revisited).

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    Arbib, Michael A

    2014-06-01

    This article discusses the view that human consciousness may share aspects of "animal awareness" with other species, but has its unique form because humans possess language. Two ingredients of a theory of the evolution of human consciousness are offered: the view that a précis of intended activity is necessarily formed in the brain of a human that communicates in a human way; and the notion that such a précis underwrites the uniquely human aspect of consciousness.

  5. Consciousness in humans and non-human animals: Recent advances and future directions.

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    Melanie eBoly

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available This joint article reflects the authors’ personal views regarding noteworthy advances in the neuroscience of consciousness in the last ten years, and suggests what we feel may be promising future directions. It is based on a small conference at the Samoset Resort in Rockport, Maine, USA, in July of 2012, organized by the Mind Science Foundation of San Antonio, Texas. Here, we summarize recent advances in our understanding of subjectivity in humans and other animals, including empirical, applied, technical and conceptual insights. These include the evidence for the importance of fronto-parietal connectivity and of feedback processes, both of which enable information to travel across distant cortical areas effectively, as well as numerous dissociations between consciousness and cognitive functions, such as attention, in humans. In addition, we describe the development of mental imagery paradigms, which made it possible to identify covert awareness in non-responsive subjects. Non-human animal consciousness research has also witnessed substantial advances on the specific role of cortical areas and higher order thalamus for consciousness, thanks to important technological advances. In addition, much progress has been made in the understanding of non-vertebrate cognition relevant to possible conscious states. Finally, major advances have been made in theories of consciousness, and also in their comparison with the available evidence. Along with reviewing these findings, each author suggests future avenues for research in their field of investigation.

  6. Consciousness

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Zeman, A

    2001-01-01

    Consciousness is topical, for reasons including its renewed respectability among psychologists, rapid progress in the neuroscience of perception, memory and action, advances in artificial intelligence...

  7. The Role of Consciousness in Human Cognitive Activity

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    Victor M. Allakhverdov

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The problem of consciousness is examined in the article. It is argued that all the existing approaches to consciousness do not explain the role consciousness plays in human life. An attempt of revealing and describing the principles of the mind’s work is made. Experimental phenomena observed by the author and his followers, particularly, the tendency of previously non-realized ideas not to be realized subsequently, are reviewed. The discussion of these phenomena allows to formulate a novel view on the nature of consciousness.

  8. Panpsychism, pan-consciousness and the non-human turn: Rethinking being as conscious matter

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    Cornel du Toit

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available It is not surprising that in a time of intensified ecological awareness a new appreciation of nature and the inanimate world arises. Two examples are panpsychism (the extension of consciousness to the cosmos and deep incarnation (the idea that God was not only incarnated in human form but also in the non-human world. Consciousness studies flourish and are related to nature, the animal world and inorganic nature. A metaphysics of consciousness emerges, of which panpsychism is a good example. Panpsychism or panconsciousness or speculative realism endows all matter with a form of consciousness, energy and experience. The consciousness question is increasingly linked to the quantum world, which offers some option in bridging mind and reality, consciousness and matter. In this regard Kauffman’s notion of ‘triad’ is referred to as well as the implied idea of cosmic mind. This is related to the notion of ‘deep incarnation’ as introduced by Gregersen. Some analogical links are made between panpsychism and deep incarnation.

  9. Towards environmentally sustainable human behaviour: targeting non-conscious and conscious processes for effective and acceptable policies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marteau, Theresa M.

    2017-05-01

    Meeting climate change targets to limit global warming to 2°C requires rapid and large reductions in demand for products that most contribute to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. These include production of bulk materials (e.g. steel and cement), energy supply (e.g. fossil fuels) and animal source foods (particularly ruminants and their products). Effective strategies to meet these targets require transformative changes in supply as well as demand, involving changes in economic, political and legal systems at local, national and international levels, building on evidence from many disciplines. This paper outlines contributions from behavioural science in reducing demand. Grounded in dual-process models of human behaviour (involving non-conscious and conscious processes) this paper considers first why interventions aimed at changing population values towards the environment are usually insufficient or unnecessary for reducing demand although they may be important in increasing public acceptability of policies that could reduce demand. It then outlines two sets of evidence from behavioural science towards effective systems-based strategies, to identify interventions likely to be effective at: (i) reducing demand for products that contribute most to GHG emissions, mainly targeting non-conscious processes and (ii) increasing public acceptability for policy changes to enable these interventions, targeting conscious processes. This article is part of the themed issue 'Material demand reduction'.

  10. Towards environmentally sustainable human behaviour: targeting non-conscious and conscious processes for effective and acceptable policies

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-01

    Meeting climate change targets to limit global warming to 2°C requires rapid and large reductions in demand for products that most contribute to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. These include production of bulk materials (e.g. steel and cement), energy supply (e.g. fossil fuels) and animal source foods (particularly ruminants and their products). Effective strategies to meet these targets require transformative changes in supply as well as demand, involving changes in economic, political and legal systems at local, national and international levels, building on evidence from many disciplines. This paper outlines contributions from behavioural science in reducing demand. Grounded in dual-process models of human behaviour (involving non-conscious and conscious processes) this paper considers first why interventions aimed at changing population values towards the environment are usually insufficient or unnecessary for reducing demand although they may be important in increasing public acceptability of policies that could reduce demand. It then outlines two sets of evidence from behavioural science towards effective systems-based strategies, to identify interventions likely to be effective at: (i) reducing demand for products that contribute most to GHG emissions, mainly targeting non-conscious processes and (ii) increasing public acceptability for policy changes to enable these interventions, targeting conscious processes. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Material demand reduction’. PMID:28461435

  11. The thinking ape: the enigma of human consciousness.

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    Paulson, Steve; Chalmers, David; Kahneman, Daniel; Santos, Laurie; Schiff, Nicholas

    2013-11-01

    What is the origin and nature of consciousness? If consciousness is common to humans and animals alike, what are the defining traits of human consciousness? Moderated by Steve Paulson, executive producer and host of To the Best of Our Knowledge, Nobel laureate psychologist Daniel Kahneman, philosopher David Chalmers, expert in primate cognition Laurie Santos, and physician-scientist Nicholas Schiff discuss what it means to be conscious and examine the human capacities displayed in cognitive, aesthetic, and ethical behaviors, with a focus on the place and function of the mind within nature. The following is an edited transcript of the discussion that occurred October 10, 2012, 7:00-8:15 PM, at the New York Academy of Sciences in New York City.

  12. Consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    Terrence J Sejnowski

    2015-01-01

    No one did more to draw neuroscientists’ attention to the problem of consciousness in the twentieth century than Francis Crick, who may be better known as the co-discoverer (with James Watson) of the structure of DNA. Crick focused his research on visual awareness and based his analysis on the progress made over the last fifty years in uncovering the neural mechanisms underlying visual perception. Because much of what happens in our brains occurs below the level of consciousness and many of o...

  13. State dissociation, human behavior, and consciousness.

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    Mahowald, Mark W; Cramer Bornemann, Michel A; Schenck, Carlos H

    2011-01-01

    Sleep is clearly not only a whole-brain or global phenomenon, but can also be a local phenomenon. This accounts for the fact that the primary states of being (wakefulness, NREM sleep, and REM sleep) are not necessarily mutually exclusive, and components of these states may appear in various combinations, with fascinating clinical consequences. Examples include: sleep inertia, narcolepsy, sleep paralysis, lucid dreaming, REM sleep behavior disorder, sleepwalking, sleep terrors, out-of-body experiences, and reports of alien abduction. The incomplete declaration of state likewise has implications for consciousness - which also has fluid boundaries. Fluctuations in the degree of consciousness are likely explained by abnormalities of a "spatial and temporal binding rhythm" which normally results in a unified conscious experience. Dysfunctional binding may play a role in anesthetic states, autism, schizophrenia, and neurodegenerative disorders. Further study of the broad spectrum of dissociated states of sleep and wakefulness that are closely linked with states of consciousness and unconsciousness by basic neuroscientists, clinicians, and members of the legal profession will provide scientific, clinical and therapeutic insights, with forensic implications.

  14. Consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    R. J. Aumann

    2005-01-01

    Consciousness is the last great frontier of science. Here we discuss what it is, how it differs fundamentally from other scientific phenomena, what adaptive function it serves, and the difficulties in trying to explain how it works. The emphasis is on the adaptive function.

  15. Consciousness, Mind, and Spirit: Three Levels of Human Cognition

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    Andrej Ule

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The article elucidates three important concepts and realities that refer to cognitive phenomena and are often (mistakenly used as synonyms: consciousness (slo. zavest, mind (slo. um, and spirit (slo. duh. They present three levels of human cognition: individual-experiential, individual-mental, and trans-individual-mental. Simply put: the concept of consciousness pertains to the waking mental life of a human being, while the concept of mind pertains to the ability and activity to consciously comprehend and understand contents and objects of human activity. I delineate three “types” of spirit: personal spirit, objective spirit, and the objectification of spirit in productions of human culture; I have doubts, however, about the existence of cosmic or super-cosmic dimensions of spirit, although some interpretations of quantum physics and modern cosmology suggest that such dimensions are possible.

  16. Enabling technology for human collaboration.

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    Murphy, Tim Andrew (MindTel, LLC, Syracuse, NY); Jones, Wendell Bruce; Warner, David Jay (MindTel, LLC, Syracuse, NY); Doser, Adele Beatrice; Johnson, Curtis Martin; Merkle, Peter Benedict

    2003-11-01

    This report summarizes the results of a five-month LDRD late start project which explored the potential of enabling technology to improve the performance of small groups. The purpose was to investigate and develop new methods to assist groups working in high consequence, high stress, ambiguous and time critical situations, especially those for which it is impractical to adequately train or prepare. A testbed was constructed for exploratory analysis of a small group engaged in tasks with high cognitive and communication performance requirements. The system consisted of five computer stations, four with special devices equipped to collect physiologic, somatic, audio and video data. Test subjects were recruited and engaged in a cooperative video game. Each team member was provided with a sensor array for physiologic and somatic data collection while playing the video game. We explored the potential for real-time signal analysis to provide information that enables emergent and desirable group behavior and improved task performance. The data collected in this study included audio, video, game scores, physiological, somatic, keystroke, and mouse movement data. The use of self-organizing maps (SOMs) was explored to search for emergent trends in the physiological data as it correlated with the video, audio and game scores. This exploration resulted in the development of two approaches for analysis, to be used concurrently, an individual SOM and a group SOM. The individual SOM was trained using the unique data of each person, and was used to monitor the effectiveness and stress level of each member of the group. The group SOM was trained using the data of the entire group, and was used to monitor the group effectiveness and dynamics. Results suggested that both types of SOMs were required to adequately track evolutions and shifts in group effectiveness. Four subjects were used in the data collection and development of these tools. This report documents a proof of concept

  17. Human Development IX: a model of the wholeness of man, his consciousness, and collective consciousness.

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    Ventegodt, Søren; Hermansen, Tyge Dahl; Flensborg-Madsen, Trine; Rald, Erik; Nielsen, Maj Lyck; Merrick, Joav

    2006-11-14

    In this paper we look at the rational and the emotional interpretation of reality in the human brain and being, and discuss the representation of the brain-mind (ego), the body-mind (Id), and the outer world in the human wholeness (the I or "soul"). Based on this we discuss a number of factors including the coherence between perception, attention and consciousness, and the relation between thought, fantasies, visions and dreams. We discuss and explain concepts as intent, will, morals and ethics. The Jungian concept of the human collective conscious and unconscious is also analyzed. We also hypothesis on the nature of intuition and consider the source of religious experience of man. These phenomena are explained based on the concept of deep quantum chemistry and infinite dancing fractal spirals making up the energetic backbone of the world. In this paper we consider man as a real wholeness and debate the concepts of subjectivity, consciousness and intent that can be deduced from such a perspective.

  18. Human Development IX: A Model of the Wholeness of Man, His Consciousness, and Collective Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Søren Ventegodt

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we look at the rational and the emotional interpretation of reality in the human brain and being, and discuss the representation of the brain-mind (ego, the body-mind (Id, and the outer world in the human wholeness (the I or “soul”. Based on this we discuss a number of factors including the coherence between perception, attention and consciousness, and the relation between thought, fantasies, visions and dreams. We discuss and explain concepts as intent, will, morals and ethics. The Jungian concept of the human collective conscious and unconscious is also analyzed. We also hypothesis on the nature of intuition and consider the source of religious experience of man. These phenomena are explained based on the concept of deep quantum chemistry and infinite dancing fractal spirals making up the energetic backbone of the world. In this paper we consider man as a real wholeness and debate the concepts of subjectivity, consciousness and intent that can be deduced from such a perspective.

  19. Human Development IX: A Model of the Wholeness of Man, His Consciousness, and Collective Consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    Søren Ventegodt; Tyge Dahl Hermansen; Trine Flensborg-Madsen; Erik Rald; Maj Lyck Nielsen; Joav Merrick

    2006-01-01

    In this paper we look at the rational and the emotional interpretation of reality in the human brain and being, and discuss the representation of the brain-mind (ego), the body-mind (Id), and the outer world in the human wholeness (the I or “soul”). Based on this we discuss a number of factors including the coherence between perception, attention and consciousness, and the relation between thought, fantasies, visions and dreams. We discuss and explain concepts as intent, will, morals and ethi...

  20. Consciousness: a neural capacity for objectivity, especially pronounced in humans.

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    Dijker, Anton J M

    2014-01-01

    Consciousness tends to be viewed either as subjective experience of sensations and feelings, or as perception and internal representation of objects. This paper argues that neither view sufficiently acknowledges that consciousness may refer to the brain's most adaptive property: its capacity to produce states of objectivity. It is proposed that this capacity relies on multiple sensorimotor networks for internally representing objects and their properties in terms of expectancies, as well as on motivational and motor mechanisms involved in exploration, play, and care for vulnerable living and non-living objects. States of objectivity are associated with a very special phenomenal aspect; the experience that subjective aspects are absent and one is "just looking" at the world as it really is and can be. However, these states are normally closely preceded and followed by (and tend to be combined or fused with) sensations and feelings which are caused by activation of sensory and motivational mechanisms. A capacity for objectivity may have evolved in different species and can be conceived as a common basis for other elusive psychological properties such as intelligence, conscience, and esthetic experience; all three linked to crucial behaviors in human evolution such as tool making, cooperation, and art. The brain's pervasive tendency to objectify may be responsible for wrongly equating consciousness with feelings and wrongly opposing it to well-learned or habitual ("unconscious") patterns of perception and behavior.

  1. Consciousness: A neural capacity for objectivity, especially pronounced in humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anton J. M. Dijker

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Consciousness either tends to be viewed as subjective experience of sensations and feelings, or as perception and internal representation of objects. This paper argues that neither view sufficiently acknowledges that consciousness may refer to the brain’s most adaptive property: Its capacity to produce states of objectivity. It is proposed that this capacity relies on multiple sensorimotor networks for internally representing objects and their properties in terms of expectancies, as well as on motivational and motor mechanisms involved in exploration, play, and care for vulnerable living and nonliving objects. States of objectivity are associated with a very special phenomenal aspect; the experience that subjective aspects are absent and one is just looking at the world as it really is and can be. However, these states are normally closely preceded and followed by (and tend to be combined or fused with sensations and feelings which are caused by activation of sensory and motivational mechanisms. A capacity for objectivity may have evolved in different species and can be conceived as a common basis for other elusive psychological properties such as intelligence, conscience, and aesthetic experience; all three linked to crucial behaviors in human evolution such as tool making, cooperation, and art. The brain’s pervasive tendency to objectify may be responsible for wrongly equating consciousness with feelings and wrongly opposing it to well-learned or habitual (unconscious patterns of perception and behavior.

  2. An explorative study to enable environmentally conscious manufacturing for an industrial gearbox manufacturing organization

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    Sen Parag

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, environmentally conscious manufacturing (ECM has become an important aspect and proactive approach for majority of the manufacturing organizations in India. The reason is that ECM not only helps to produce environment friendly, but also helps to make money by reducing cost or achieving competitive advantage. Industrial gearbox manufacturing organizations have significant environmental impacts as industrial gearbox manufacturing involves several steps which use valuable resources and pollute the environment. Hence, this paper presents an explorative environmental study of an Indian industrial gearbox manufacturing organization. The objective of the current paper is (i to identify the environmental problems and environmentally conscious manufacturing indicators (ECMI, (ii to find out the root causes of these problems and (iii to solve the root causes based on the available state-of-the-art literature. This research work not only reviews the efficient environment friendly manufacturing techniques, but also helps the organization to become eco-efficient by producing environment friendly while making money. First ECMIs selected from literature review, are validated through process mapping. Then these indicators are prioritized using analytic hierarchy process (AHP to find out the critical environmentally conscious manufacturing indicators (CECMI. The sources of CECMIs are identified using either data envelopment analysis (DEA or direct observation of the available database. Finally, some possible solutions are also addressed in this paper.

  3. Affective consciousness: Core emotional feelings in animals and humans.

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    Panksepp, Jaak

    2005-03-01

    The position advanced in this paper is that the bedrock of emotional feelings is contained within the evolved emotional action apparatus of mammalian brains. This dual-aspect monism approach to brain-mind functions, which asserts that emotional feelings may reflect the neurodynamics of brain systems that generate instinctual emotional behaviors, saves us from various conceptual conundrums. In coarse form, primary process affective consciousness seems to be fundamentally an unconditional "gift of nature" rather than an acquired skill, even though those systems facilitate skill acquisition via various felt reinforcements. Affective consciousness, being a comparatively intrinsic function of the brain, shared homologously by all mammalian species, should be the easiest variant of consciousness to study in animals. This is not to deny that some secondary processes (e.g., awareness of feelings in the generation of behavioral choices) cannot be evaluated in animals with sufficiently clever behavioral learning procedures, as with place-preference procedures and the analysis of changes in learned behaviors after one has induced re-valuation of incentives. Rather, the claim is that a direct neuroscientific study of primary process emotional/affective states is best achieved through the study of the intrinsic ("instinctual"), albeit experientially refined, emotional action tendencies of other animals. In this view, core emotional feelings may reflect the neurodynamic attractor landscapes of a variety of extended trans-diencephalic, limbic emotional action systems-including SEEKING, FEAR, RAGE, LUST, CARE, PANIC, and PLAY. Through a study of these brain systems, the neural infrastructure of human and animal affective consciousness may be revealed. Emotional feelings are instantiated in large-scale neurodynamics that can be most effectively monitored via the ethological analysis of emotional action tendencies and the accompanying brain neurochemical/electrical changes. The

  4. What happened in the origin of human consciousness?

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    Tattersall, Ian

    2004-01-01

    At some point in its evolutionary history, our species Homo sapiens ceased to be a nonlinguistic, nonsymbolic organism, living in the world as presented to it by Nature, and instead began to exist in a world that it reconstructs in its own mind. Most scientists since Darwin have been content to explain this extraordinary transformation in human consciousness by the operation of natural selection. However, the human fossil and archaeological records indicate that modern human symbolic consciousness is not the culmination of the long trend that natural selection would predict. Instead, it shows that major change in the human past has been episodic and rare and that, as far as can be determined from the archaeological record, the passage from nonsymbolic to symbolic cognition is a recent event as well as an unprecedented one. So recent, indeed, that it significantly postdates the acquisition of modern human anatomy as expressed in skeletal structure. It, thus, appears most likely that the biological (neural) capacity underwriting the radically new behavioral mode arose as an incidental exaptation in the same process that produced the new skeletal structure of Homo sapiens, but that it lay unexpressed until it was "discovered" by means of a cultural innovation, plausibly the invention of language. As in the case of the modern anatomical structure, it appears that the new capacity was initially expressed in Africa and that its various behavioral potentials were sequentially discovered in a drawn-out process that is continuing today. An "accidental" origin of the human capacity helps understand why so many human behaviors have proven self-destructive and contradictory, a feature of our species that reductionist, selection-based scenarios are hard-put to explain.

  5. The neurocognitive bases of human multimodal food perception: consciousness.

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    Verhagen, Justus V

    2007-02-01

    This review explores how we become aware of the (integrated) flavor of food. In recent years, progress has been made understanding the neural correlates of consciousness. Experimental and computational data have been largely based on the visual system. Contemporary neurobiological frameworks of consciousness are reviewed, concluding that neural reverberation among forward- and back-projecting neural ensembles across brain areas is a common theme. In an attempt to extrapolate these concepts to the oral-sensory and olfactory systems involved with multimodal flavor perception, the integration of the sensory information of which into a flavor gestalt has been reviewed elsewhere (Verhagen, J.V., Engelen, L., 2006. The neurocognitive bases of human multimodal food perception: Sensory integration. Neurosci. Biobehav. Rev. 30(5): 613_650), I reconceptualize the flavor-sensory system by integrating it into a larger neural system termed the Homeostatic Interoceptive System (HIS). This system consists of an oral (taste, oral touch, etc.) and non-oral part (non oral-thermosensation, pain, etc.) which are anatomically and functionally highly similar. Consistent with this new concept and with a large volume of experimental data, I propose that awareness of intraoral food is related to the concomitant reverberant self-sustained activation of a coalition of neuronal subsets in agranular insula and orbitofrontal cortex (affect, hedonics) and agranular insula and perirhinal cortex (food identity), as well as the amygdala (affect and identity) in humans. I further discuss the functional anatomy in relation essential nodes. These formulations are by necessity to some extent speculative.

  6. Humans cannot consciously generate random numbers sequences: Polemic study.

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    Figurska, Małgorzata; Stańczyk, Maciej; Kulesza, Kamil

    2008-01-01

    It is widely believed, that randomness exists in Nature. In fact such an assumption underlies many scientific theories and is embedded in the foundations of quantum mechanics. Assuming that this hypothesis is valid one can use natural phenomena, like radioactive decay, to generate random numbers. Today, computers are capable of generating the so-called pseudorandom numbers. Such series of numbers are only seemingly random (bias in the randomness quality can be observed). Question whether people can produce random numbers, has been investigated by many scientists in the recent years. The paper "Humans can consciously generate random numbers sequences..." published recently in Medical Hypotheses made claims that were in many ways contrary to state of art; it also stated far-reaching hypotheses. So, we decided to repeat the experiments reported, with special care being taken of proper laboratory procedures. Here, we present the results and discuss possible implications in computer and other sciences.

  7. Evolution of human brain functions: the functional structure of human consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cloninger, C Robert

    2009-11-01

    The functional structure of self-aware consciousness in human beings is described based on the evolution of human brain functions. Prior work on heritable temperament and character traits is extended to account for the quantum-like and holographic properties (i.e. parts elicit wholes) of self-aware consciousness. Cladistic analysis is used to identify the succession of ancestors leading to human beings. The functional capacities that emerge along this lineage of ancestors are described. The ecological context in which each cladogenesis occurred is described to illustrate the shifting balance of evolution as a complex adaptive system. Comparative neuroanatomy is reviewed to identify the brain structures and networks that emerged coincident with the emergent brain functions. Individual differences in human temperament traits were well developed in the common ancestor shared by reptiles and humans. Neocortical development in mammals proceeded in five major transitions: from early reptiles to early mammals, early primates, simians, early Homo, and modern Homo sapiens. These transitions provide the foundation for human self-awareness related to sexuality, materiality, emotionality, intellectuality, and spirituality, respectively. The functional structure of human self-aware consciousness is concerned with the regulation of five planes of being: sexuality, materiality, emotionality, intellectuality, and spirituality. Each plane elaborates neocortical functions organized around one of the five special senses. The interactions among these five planes gives rise to a 5 x 5 matrix of subplanes, which are functions that coarsely describe the focus of neocortical regulation. Each of these 25 neocortical functions regulates each of five basic motives or drives that can be measured as temperaments or basic emotions related to fear, anger, disgust, surprise, and happiness/sadness. The resulting 5 x 5 x 5 matrix of human characteristics provides a general and testable model of the

  8. Consciousness, plasticity, and connectomics: the role of intersubjectivity in human cognition.

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    Allen, Micah; Williams, Gary

    2011-01-01

    Consciousness is typically construed as being explainable purely in terms of either private, raw feels or higher-order, reflective representations. In contrast to this false dichotomy, we propose a new view of consciousness as an interactive, plastic phenomenon open to sociocultural influence. We take up our account of consciousness from the observation of radical cortical neuroplasticity in human development. Accordingly, we draw upon recent research on macroscopic neural networks, including the "default mode," to illustrate cases in which an individual's particular "connectome" is shaped by encultured social practices that depend upon and influence phenomenal and reflective consciousness. On our account, the dynamically interacting connectivity of these networks bring about important individual differences in conscious experience and determine what is "present" in consciousness. Further, we argue that the organization of the brain into discrete anti-correlated networks supports the phenomenological distinction of prereflective and reflective consciousness, but we emphasize that this finding must be interpreted in light of the dynamic, category-resistant nature of consciousness. Our account motivates philosophical and empirical hypotheses regarding the appropriate time-scale and function of neuroplastic adaptation, the relation of high and low-frequency neural activity to consciousness and cognitive plasticity, and the role of ritual social practices in neural development and cognitive function.

  9. Harnessing anesthesia and brain imaging for the study of human consciousness.

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    Långsjo, Jaakko W; Revonsuo, Antti; Scheinin, Harry

    2014-01-01

    Philosophers have been trying to solve the mind-body problem for hundreds of years. Consciousness is the core of this problem: How do subjective conscious sensations, perceptions, feelings, and thoughts arise out of objective physical brain activities? How is this subjective conscious world in causal interaction with the objective sensory and motor mechanisms of the brain and the body? Although we witness the seamless interaction of the mental and the physical worlds in our everyday lives, no scientific theory can yet fully describe or explain it. The hard problem of consciousness, the question why and how any brain activity should be accompanied by any subjective experiences at all, remains a mystery and a challenge for modern science. Anesthesia offers a unique and safe way to directly manipulate the state of consciousness and can, thus, be used as a tool in consciousness research. With neuroimaging, such as positron emission tomography (PET) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) performed at different states of consciousness, it is possible to visualize the state-related changes and pinpoint the brain structures or neural mechanisms related to changes in consciousness. With these tools, neurosciences now show promise in disentangling the eternal enigma of human consciousness. In this article, we will review the recent advancements in the field.

  10. Different Signal Enhancement Pathways of Attention and Consciousness Underlie Perception in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Boxtel, Jeroen J A

    2017-06-14

    It is not yet known whether attention and consciousness operate through similar or largely different mechanisms. Visual processing mechanisms are routinely characterized by measuring contrast response functions (CRFs). In this report, behavioral CRFs were obtained in humans (both males and females) by measuring afterimage durations over the entire range of inducer stimulus contrasts to reveal visual mechanisms behind attention and consciousness. Deviations relative to the standard CRF, i.e., gain functions, describe the strength of signal enhancement, which were assessed for both changes due to attentional task and conscious perception. It was found that attention displayed a response-gain function, whereas consciousness displayed a contrast-gain function. Through model comparisons, which only included contrast-gain modulations, both contrast-gain and response-gain effects can be explained with a two-level normalization model, in which consciousness affects only the first level and attention affects only the second level. These results demonstrate that attention and consciousness can effectively show different gain functions because they operate through different signal enhancement mechanisms.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The relationship between attention and consciousness is still debated. Mapping contrast response functions (CRFs) has allowed (neuro)scientists to gain important insights into the mechanistic underpinnings of visual processing. Here, the influence of both attention and consciousness on these functions were measured and they displayed a strong dissociation. First, attention lowered CRFs, whereas consciousness raised them. Second, attention manifests itself as a response-gain function, whereas consciousness manifests itself as a contrast-gain function. Extensive model comparisons show that these results are best explained in a two-level normalization model in which consciousness affects only the first level, whereas attention affects only the second level

  11. [Asymmetry of the bioelectrical activity of the human brain at different levels of consciousness].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rusalova, M N

    2006-12-01

    Asymmetry of different human EEG indices was studied at different levels of consciousness. Subjects' self-reported changes in the content of consciousness: the intensity and quality of involuntary mental processes served as indicator of the level of consciousness. It was shown that a certain profile of EEG asymmetry corresponded to each the observed level of consciousness. In active state of consciousness, the connections in the high-frequency bands: beta-2 and gamma, were more pronounced in the left hemisphere of the brain. At the same time, transition of the focus of coherent connections to the right hemisphere was characteristic of the state of inhibition of "internal speech". The interhemisphere dynamics of autospectra amplitude and foci of coherent connections supports the notion that the character of interhemisphere asymmetry of the brain bioelectrical activity depends on its functional state.

  12. The spirituality of human consciousness: a Catholic evaluation of some current neuro-scientific interpretations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGoldrick, Terence A

    2012-09-01

    Catholic theology's traditional understanding of the spiritual nature of the human person begins with the idea of a rational soul and human mind that is made manifest in free will--the spiritual experience of the act of consciousness and cause of all human arts. The rationale for this religion-based idea of personhood is key to understanding ethical dilemmas posed by modern research that applies a more empirical methodology in its interpretations about the cause of human consciousness. Applications of these beliefs about the body/soul composite to the theory of evolution and to discoveries in neuroscience, paleoanthropology, as well as to recent animal intelligence studies, can be interpreted from this religious and philosophical perspective, which argues for the human soul as the unifying cause of the person's unique abilities. Free will and consciousness are at the nexus of the mutual influence of body and soul upon one another in the traditional Catholic view, that argues for a spiritual dimension to personality that is on a par with the physical metabolic processes at play. Therapies that affect consciousness are ethically problematic, because of their implications for free will and human dignity. Studies of resilience, as an example, argue for the greater, albeit limited, role of the soul's conscious choices in healing as opposed to metabolic or physical changes to the brain alone.

  13. Oxytonergic circuitry sustains and enables creative cognition in humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Dreu, Carsten K. W.; Baas, Matthijs; Roskes, Marieke; Sligte, Daniel J.; Ebstein, Richard P.; Chew, Soo Hong; Tong, Terry; Jiang, Yushi; Mayseless, Naama; Shamay-Tsoory, Simone G.

    2014-01-01

    Creativity enables humans to adapt flexibly to changing circumstances, to manage complex social relations and to survive and prosper through social, technological and medical innovations. In humans, chronic, trait-based as well as temporary, state-based approach orientation has been linked to increa

  14. Oxytonergic circuitry sustains and enables creative cognition in humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Dreu, Carsten K. W.; Baas, Matthijs; Roskes, Marieke; Sligte, Daniel J.; Ebstein, Richard P.; Chew, Soo Hong; Tong, Terry; Jiang, Yushi; Mayseless, Naama; Shamay-Tsoory, Simone G.

    2014-01-01

    Creativity enables humans to adapt flexibly to changing circumstances, to manage complex social relations and to survive and prosper through social, technological and medical innovations. In humans, chronic, trait-based as well as temporary, state-based approach orientation has been linked to increa

  15. Human consciousness and sleep/waking rhythms: a review and some neuropsychological considerations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broughton, R

    1982-09-01

    The relevance of sleep/waking rhythms to issues of human consciousness is reviewed from data in the literature and from personal studies. Consciousness is often considered to be markedly attenuated or absent in sleep. There is, however, much evidence for a rich subjective experience during sleep, much of which is not recalled later. This implies that William James' "stream of consciousness' persists continuously throughout sleep as well as wakefulness, but that problems of memory recall interfere with its being reported as such. Sleeping subjects show selective awareness of external stimuli, with significant stimuli generally leading to awakening and relatively nonsignificant stimuli, at least at times, being incorporated into the ongoing mental activity of REM or NREM sleep. Mentation throughout sleep is characterized by a high degree of autonomy and little willful control. Creative insight and problem solving of a very high order may occur in sleep and involve either dreaming or thought-like mentation. Parameters of waking consciousness show possibly sleep-related rhythmic fluctuations at both circadian (24 hr sleep/waking) and ultradian (90-120) min, NREM/REM sleep) rates. Moreover, waking consciousness is markedly influenced by the quality of temporal stability of preceding sleep. A substantial number of so-called "altered states of consciousness" is found to involve primarily or exclusively dysfunction of sleep/waking mechanisms. Cerebral lesions can produce selective impairment of aspects of sleep mentation. It is concluded that further analysis of subjective awareness in sleep or in partial sleep states is very relevant and indeed vital to a more comprehensive understanding of human consciousness.

  16. Overcoming Deformations of the Legal Consciousness of Teenagers through the Medium of Teaching Humanities Subjects

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    This article proposes a model for teaching humanities subjects, which is oriented towards overcoming deformations of the legal consciousness of teenagers. The author provides a description of the model’s aims, content, stages, and procedural characteristics. The author views the learning process as the opportunity to forestall illicit behavior by the underage.

  17. Overcoming Deformations of the Legal Consciousness of Teenagers through the Medium of Teaching Humanities Subjects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena N. Katysheva

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available This article proposes a model for teaching humanities subjects, which is oriented towards overcoming deformations of the legal consciousness of teenagers. The author provides a description of the model’s aims, content, stages, and procedural characteristics. The author views the learning process as the opportunity to forestall illicit behavior by the underage.

  18. De-racialising intelligence, human potentiality and consciousness: A ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Sophia: An African Journal of Philosophy ... And the most fundamental biological differencing mechanism links to a purported racial ... a causal relationship between race and human potentiality, by which a black man can neither be as ... capacities inherent in the productions of Africans and people of generally black origin.

  19. The Human Aspect of Christ between Classic and Quantum Consciousness: Gethsemane - Anxiety & Depression between Biochemistry & Anthropology

    OpenAIRE

    Cocchi, Massimo; Tonello, Lucio; Gabrielli, Fabio

    2012-01-01

    The studies carried out in recent years on the molecular dynamics of consciousness, especially in relation to diseases such as major depression and bipolar disorder, on man considered as a synthesis of nature and culture, in their interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary expression, prompted us to carry out the molecular logic involving the human component of Christ (Christ-Man). On the basis of evidence presented in the Holy Scriptures, regarding the hours that preceded his death, we tend, in...

  20. Conscious brain-to-brain communication in humans using non-invasive technologies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carles Grau

    Full Text Available Human sensory and motor systems provide the natural means for the exchange of information between individuals, and, hence, the basis for human civilization. The recent development of brain-computer interfaces (BCI has provided an important element for the creation of brain-to-brain communication systems, and precise brain stimulation techniques are now available for the realization of non-invasive computer-brain interfaces (CBI. These technologies, BCI and CBI, can be combined to realize the vision of non-invasive, computer-mediated brain-to-brain (B2B communication between subjects (hyperinteraction. Here we demonstrate the conscious transmission of information between human brains through the intact scalp and without intervention of motor or peripheral sensory systems. Pseudo-random binary streams encoding words were transmitted between the minds of emitter and receiver subjects separated by great distances, representing the realization of the first human brain-to-brain interface. In a series of experiments, we established internet-mediated B2B communication by combining a BCI based on voluntary motor imagery-controlled electroencephalographic (EEG changes with a CBI inducing the conscious perception of phosphenes (light flashes through neuronavigated, robotized transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS, with special care taken to block sensory (tactile, visual or auditory cues. Our results provide a critical proof-of-principle demonstration for the development of conscious B2B communication technologies. More fully developed, related implementations will open new research venues in cognitive, social and clinical neuroscience and the scientific study of consciousness. We envision that hyperinteraction technologies will eventually have a profound impact on the social structure of our civilization and raise important ethical issues.

  1. Conscious brain-to-brain communication in humans using non-invasive technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grau, Carles; Ginhoux, Romuald; Riera, Alejandro; Nguyen, Thanh Lam; Chauvat, Hubert; Berg, Michel; Amengual, Julià L; Pascual-Leone, Alvaro; Ruffini, Giulio

    2014-01-01

    Human sensory and motor systems provide the natural means for the exchange of information between individuals, and, hence, the basis for human civilization. The recent development of brain-computer interfaces (BCI) has provided an important element for the creation of brain-to-brain communication systems, and precise brain stimulation techniques are now available for the realization of non-invasive computer-brain interfaces (CBI). These technologies, BCI and CBI, can be combined to realize the vision of non-invasive, computer-mediated brain-to-brain (B2B) communication between subjects (hyperinteraction). Here we demonstrate the conscious transmission of information between human brains through the intact scalp and without intervention of motor or peripheral sensory systems. Pseudo-random binary streams encoding words were transmitted between the minds of emitter and receiver subjects separated by great distances, representing the realization of the first human brain-to-brain interface. In a series of experiments, we established internet-mediated B2B communication by combining a BCI based on voluntary motor imagery-controlled electroencephalographic (EEG) changes with a CBI inducing the conscious perception of phosphenes (light flashes) through neuronavigated, robotized transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), with special care taken to block sensory (tactile, visual or auditory) cues. Our results provide a critical proof-of-principle demonstration for the development of conscious B2B communication technologies. More fully developed, related implementations will open new research venues in cognitive, social and clinical neuroscience and the scientific study of consciousness. We envision that hyperinteraction technologies will eventually have a profound impact on the social structure of our civilization and raise important ethical issues.

  2. Creative Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashok Natarajan

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Consciousness is creative. That creativity expresses in myriad ways – as moments in time in which decades of progress can be achieved overnight, as organizational innovations of immense power for social accomplishment; as creative social values that further influence the evolution of organizations and society; as the creativity of individuality in the leader, genius, artist and inventor; as social creativity that converts raw human experience into civilization; as cultural creativity that transforms human relationships into sources of rich emotional capacity; and as value-based educational creativity that can awaken and nurture young minds to develop and discover their own inherent capacity for knowledge in freedom. Through such moments do society and humanity evolve. Education is society’s most advanced institution for conscious social evolution. Values are the essence of society’s knowledge for highest accomplishment. Education that imparts values is an evolutionary social organization that can hasten the emergence of that creative consciousness.

  3. Nonneurocognitive Extended Consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wojcik, Kevin; Chemero, Anthony

    2012-01-01

    One of the attributes necessary for Watson to be considered human is that it must be conscious. From Rachlin's (2012) point of view, that of teleological behaviorism, consciousness refers to the organization of behavioral complexity in which overt behavior is distributed widely over time. Consciousness is something that humans do, or achieve, in…

  4. Nonneurocognitive Extended Consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wojcik, Kevin; Chemero, Anthony

    2012-01-01

    One of the attributes necessary for Watson to be considered human is that it must be conscious. From Rachlin's (2012) point of view, that of teleological behaviorism, consciousness refers to the organization of behavioral complexity in which overt behavior is distributed widely over time. Consciousness is something that humans do, or achieve, in…

  5. Enabling research with human embryonic and fetal tissue resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerrelli, Dianne; Lisgo, Steven; Copp, Andrew J.; Lindsay, Susan

    2015-01-01

    Summary Congenital anomalies are a significant burden on human health. Understanding the developmental origins of such anomalies is key to developing potential therapies. The Human Developmental Biology Resource (HDBR), based in London and Newcastle UK, was established to provide embryonic and fetal material for a variety of human studies ranging from single gene expression analysis to large scale genomic/transcriptomic studies. Increasingly HDBR material is enabling the derivation of stem cell lines and contributing towards developments in tissue engineering. Use of the HDBR and other fetal tissue resources discussed here will contribute to the long term aims of understanding the causation and pathogenesis of congenital anomalies, and developing new methods for their treatment and prevention. PMID:26395135

  6. Occupational Consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramugondo, Elelwani L

    2015-10-02

    Occupational consciousness refers to ongoing awareness of the dynamics of hegemony and recognition that dominant practices are sustained through what people do every day, with implications for personal and collective health. The emergence of the construct in post-apartheid South Africa signifies the country's ongoing struggle with negotiating long-standing dynamics of power that were laid down during colonialism, and maintained under black majority rule. Consciousness, a key component of the new terminology, is framed from post-colonial perspectives - notably work by Biko and Fanon - and grounded in the philosophy of liberation, in order to draw attention to continuing unequal intersubjective relations that play out through human occupation. The paper also draws important links between occupational consciousness and other related constructs, namely occupational possibilities, occupational choice, occupational apartheid, and collective occupation. The use of the term 'consciousness' in sociology, with related or different meanings, is also explored. Occupational consciousness is then advanced as a critical notion that frames everyday doing as a potentially liberating response to oppressive social structures. This paper advances theorizing as a scholarly practice in occupational science, and could potentially expand inter or transdisciplinary work for critical conceptualizations of human occupation.

  7. Human development VIII: a theory of "deep" quantum chemistry and cell consciousness: quantum chemistry controls genes and biochemistry to give cells and higher organisms consciousness and complex behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ventegodt, Søren; Hermansen, Tyge Dahl; Flensborg-Madsen, Trine; Nielsen, Maj Lyck; Merrick, Joav

    2006-11-14

    Deep quantum chemistry is a theory of deeply structured quantum fields carrying the biological information of the cell, making it able to remember, intend, represent the inner and outer world for comparison, understand what it "sees", and make choices on its structure, form, behavior and division. We suggest that deep quantum chemistry gives the cell consciousness and all the qualities and abilities related to consciousness. We use geometric symbolism, which is a pre-mathematical and philosophical approach to problems that cannot yet be handled mathematically. Using Occam's razor we have started with the simplest model that works; we presume this to be a many-dimensional, spiral fractal. We suggest that all the electrons of the large biological molecules' orbitals make one huge "cell-orbital", which is structured according to the spiral fractal nature of quantum fields. Consciousness of single cells, multi cellular structures as e.g. organs, multi-cellular organisms and multi-individual colonies (like ants) and human societies can thus be explained by deep quantum chemistry. When biochemical activity is strictly controlled by the quantum-mechanical super-orbital of the cell, this orbital can deliver energetic quanta as biological information, distributed through many fractal levels of the cell to guide form and behavior of an individual single or a multi-cellular organism. The top level of information is the consciousness of the cell or organism, which controls all the biochemical processes. By this speculative work inspired by Penrose and Hameroff we hope to inspire other researchers to formulate more strict and mathematically correct hypothesis on the complex and coherence nature of matter, life and consciousness.

  8. Penrose-Hameroff orchestrated objective-reduction proposal for human consciousness is not biologically feasible.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKemmish, Laura K; Reimers, Jeffrey R; McKenzie, Ross H; Mark, Alan E; Hush, Noel S

    2009-08-01

    Penrose and Hameroff have argued that the conventional models of a brain function based on neural networks alone cannot account for human consciousness, claiming that quantum-computation elements are also required. Specifically, in their Orchestrated Objective Reduction (Orch OR) model [R. Penrose and S. R. Hameroff, J. Conscious. Stud. 2, 99 (1995)], it is postulated that microtubules act as quantum processing units, with individual tubulin dimers forming the computational elements. This model requires that the tubulin is able to switch between alternative conformational states in a coherent manner, and that this process be rapid on the physiological time scale. Here, the biological feasibility of the Orch OR proposal is examined in light of recent experimental studies on microtubule assembly and dynamics. It is shown that the tubulins do not possess essential properties required for the Orch OR proposal, as originally proposed, to hold. Further, we consider also recent progress in the understanding of the long-lived coherent motions in biological systems, a feature critical to Orch OR, and show that no reformation of the proposal based on known physical paradigms could lead to quantum computing within microtubules. Hence, the Orch OR model is not a feasible explanation of the origin of consciousness.

  9. Penrose-Hameroff orchestrated objective-reduction proposal for human consciousness is not biologically feasible

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKemmish, Laura K.; Reimers, Jeffrey R.; McKenzie, Ross H.; Mark, Alan E.; Hush, Noel S.

    2009-08-01

    Penrose and Hameroff have argued that the conventional models of a brain function based on neural networks alone cannot account for human consciousness, claiming that quantum-computation elements are also required. Specifically, in their Orchestrated Objective Reduction (Orch OR) model [R. Penrose and S. R. Hameroff, J. Conscious. Stud. 2, 99 (1995)], it is postulated that microtubules act as quantum processing units, with individual tubulin dimers forming the computational elements. This model requires that the tubulin is able to switch between alternative conformational states in a coherent manner, and that this process be rapid on the physiological time scale. Here, the biological feasibility of the Orch OR proposal is examined in light of recent experimental studies on microtubule assembly and dynamics. It is shown that the tubulins do not possess essential properties required for the Orch OR proposal, as originally proposed, to hold. Further, we consider also recent progress in the understanding of the long-lived coherent motions in biological systems, a feature critical to Orch OR, and show that no reformation of the proposal based on known physical paradigms could lead to quantum computing within microtubules. Hence, the Orch OR model is not a feasible explanation of the origin of consciousness.

  10. Symmetry States of the physical space: an expanded reference frame for understanding human consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manek, Nisha J

    2012-01-01

    A remarkable phenomenon is taking place around the globe, one that I have been fortunate enough to witness and in which to participate. The relics of the historical Buddha, also known as Siddhartha or Shakyamuni Buddha, still survive today over 2500 years since his enlightenment, and, for the first time in history, are traveling throughout the world. In common Buddhist practice, relics are highly venerated and treasured remains of realized Masters. It is very rare for relics to travel from city to city and be available for viewing by the general public. The Buddha relic tour is demonstrating that a direct experience of the spiritual state is not mysterious, nor is it for a select few. The spiritual state, here defined as a universal theme of unconditional love, is a component of human evolutionary unfoldment, a process through which thousands of human beings have passed, and through which thousands more will pass. We are "waking up" as a species. Consequently, more information is required about this transformation of human consciousness. The Buddha relics offer us a priceless means by which we can obtain a richer perspective about the nature of human consciousness, spiritual realities such as love, and ultimately understanding ourselves.

  11. Consciousness and the self.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Francesco, Michele

    2008-01-01

    In this paper I argue that, even though there is no doubt that to understand consciousness we have to understand the brain, the idea that a complete understanding of the essence of the phenomenon of human consciousness might derive from neuroscience alone is more disputable. Major progress in our understanding of the phenomenon of consciousness can certainly derive from neuroscience, but, as far as human consciousness is concerned, the thesis that since consciousness starts as a biological reality the proper locus of its analysis and explanation lies in neuroscience encounters serious difficulties. In particular, any theory of human consciousness that entails an explanation of the genesis and the nature of the subject of experience would require reference to social and cultural phenomena as well as to biological phenomena: the science of human consciousness, then, cannot avoid being intrinsically pluralistic in character.

  12. [Altered states of consciousness].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gora, E P

    2005-01-01

    The review of modern ideas concerning the altered states of consciousness is presented in this article. Various methods of entry into the altered states of consciousness are looked over. It is shown that the altered states of consciousness are insufficiently known, but important aspects of human being existence. The role of investigation of the altered states of consciousness for the creation of integrative scientific conception base is discussed.

  13. Consciousness, brain, neuroplasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Askenasy, Jean; Lehmann, Joseph

    2013-01-01

    Subjectivity, intentionality, self-awareness and will are major components of consciousness in human beings. Changes in consciousness and its content following different brain processes and malfunction have long been studied. Cognitive sciences assume that brain activities have an infrastructure, but there is also evidence that consciousness itself may change this infrastructure. The two-way influence between brain and consciousness has been at the center of philosophy and less so, of science...

  14. Altair Lunar Lander Development Status: Enabling Human Lunar Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laurini, Kathleen C.; Connolly, John F.

    2009-01-01

    As a critical part of the NASA Constellation Program lunar transportation architecture, the Altair lunar lander will return humans to the moon and enable a sustained program of lunar exploration. The Altair is to deliver up to four crew to the surface of the moon and return them to low lunar orbit at the completion of their mission. Altair will also be used to deliver large cargo elements to the lunar surface, enabling the buildup of an outpost. The Altair Project initialized its design using a minimum functionality approach that identified critical functionality required to meet a minimum set of Altair requirements. The Altair team then performed several analysis cycles using risk-informed design to selectively add back components and functionality to increase the vehicles safety and reliability. The analysis cycle results were captured in a reference Altair design. This design was reviewed at the Constellation Lunar Capabilities Concept Review, a Mission Concept Review, where key driving requirements were confirmed and the Altair Project was given authorization to begin Phase A project formulation. A key objective of Phase A is to revisit the Altair vehicle configuration, to better optimize it to complete its broad range of crew and cargo delivery missions. Industry was invited to partner with NASA early in the design to provide their insights regarding Altair configuration and key engineering challenges. A blended NASA-industry team will continue to refine the lander configuration and mature the vehicle design over the next few years. This paper will update the international community on the status of the Altair Project as it addresses the challenges of project formulation, including optimizing a vehicle configuration based on the work of the NASA Altair Project team, industry inputs and the plans going forward in designing the Altair lunar lander.

  15. Altair Lunar Lander Development Status: Enabling Human Lunar Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laurini, Kathleen C.; Connolly, John F.

    2009-01-01

    As a critical part of the NASA Constellation Program lunar transportation architecture, the Altair lunar lander will return humans to the moon and enable a sustained program of lunar exploration. The Altair is to deliver up to four crew to the surface of the moon and return them to low lunar orbit at the completion of their mission. Altair will also be used to deliver large cargo elements to the lunar surface, enabling the buildup of an outpost. The Altair Project initialized its design using a minimum functionality approach that identified critical functionality required to meet a minimum set of Altair requirements. The Altair team then performed several analysis cycles using risk-informed design to selectively add back components and functionality to increase the vehicles safety and reliability. The analysis cycle results were captured in a reference Altair design. This design was reviewed at the Constellation Lunar Capabilities Concept Review, a Mission Concept Review, where key driving requirements were confirmed and the Altair Project was given authorization to begin Phase A project formulation. A key objective of Phase A is to revisit the Altair vehicle configuration, to better optimize it to complete its broad range of crew and cargo delivery missions. Industry was invited to partner with NASA early in the design to provide their insights regarding Altair configuration and key engineering challenges. A blended NASA-industry team will continue to refine the lander configuration and mature the vehicle design over the next few years. This paper will update the international community on the status of the Altair Project as it addresses the challenges of project formulation, including optimizing a vehicle configuration based on the work of the NASA Altair Project team, industry inputs and the plans going forward in designing the Altair lunar lander.

  16. Consciousness and Its Evolution: from a Human Being to a Post-Human

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Handziy Taras

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The main idea described in the paper is: the age of a person, in its physical and biological sense, may not change with the passed time, i.e. the person’s body may not have any significant changes for a long period of time. It is possible when a person has carried out the experiment in consciousness. The experiment has been described.

  17. Creative Consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    Ashok Natarajan

    2013-01-01

    Consciousness is creative. That creativity expresses in myriad ways – as moments in time in which decades of progress can be achieved overnight, as organizational innovations of immense power for social accomplishment; as creative social values that further influence the evolution of organizations and society; as the creativity of individuality in the leader, genius, artist and inventor; as social creativity that converts raw human experience into civilization; as cultural creativity that tra...

  18. Consciousness, plasticity, and connectomics: the role of intersubjectivity in human cognition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Allen, Micah Galen; Williams, Gary

    2011-01-01

    Consciousness is typically construed as being explainable purely in terms of either private, raw feels or higher-order, reflective representations. In contrast to this false dichotomy, we propose a new view of consciousness as an interactive, plastic phenomenon open to sociocultural influence. We...... by encultured social practices that depend upon and influence phenomenal and reflective consciousness. On our account, the dynamically interacting connectivity of these networks bring about important individual differences in conscious experience and determine what is “present” in consciousness. Further, we...

  19. The Science of Consciousness

    CERN Document Server

    CERN. Geneva

    2015-01-01

    We not only act in the world but we consciously perceive it. The interactions of myriad of neuronal and sub-neuronal processes that are responsible for visual behaviors also give rise to the daily movie screened for our benefit in the privacy of our own skull. I will discuss the empirical progress that has been achieved over the past several decades in characterizing the behavioral and the neuronal correlates of consciousness in human and non-human animals and in dissociating selective visual attention from visual consciousness. I will introduce Tononi’s integrated Information Theory (IIT) that explains in a principled manner which physical systems are capable of conscious, subjective experience. The theory explains many empirical facts about consciousness and its pathologies in humans. It can also be extrapolated to more difficult cases, such as fetuses, mice, or bees. The theory predicts that many, seemingly complex, systems are not conscious, in particular digital computers running software, even if thes...

  20. Noisy cooperative intermittent processes: From blinking quantum dots to human consciousness

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Allegrini, Paolo; Paradisi, Paolo; Menicucci, Danilo; Bedini, Remo; Gemignani, Angelo [Istituto di Fisiologia Clinica (IFC-CNR), Via Moruzzi 1, 56124 Pisa (Italy); Fronzoni, Leone, E-mail: allegrini@ifc.cnr.it [Dipartimento di Fisica ' E. Fermi' -Universita di Pisa and INFM CRS-SOFT, Largo Pontecorvo 3, 56127 Pisa (Italy)

    2011-07-08

    We study the superposition of a non-Poisson renewal process with the presence of a superimposed Poisson noise. The non-Poisson renewals mark the passage between meta-stable states in system with self-organization. We propose methods to measure the amount of information due to the two independent processes independently, and we see that a superficial study based on the survival probabilities yield stretched-exponential relaxations. Our method is in fact able to unravel the inverse-power law relaxation of the isolated non-Poisson processes, even when noise is present. We provide examples of this behavior in system of diverse nature, from blinking nano-crystals to weak turbulence. Finally we focus our discussion on events extracted from human electroencephalograms, and we discuss their connection with emerging properties of integrated neural dynamics, i.e. consciousness.

  1. Pain and Consciousness in Humans. Or Why Pain Subserves the Identity and Self-representation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irene Venturella

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Traditional definitions of pain assume that an individual learns about pain through verbal usages related to the experience of injury in early life. This emphasis on the verbal correlates of pain restricts our understanding of pain to the context of adult human consciousness. In this paper we instead support the idea that our understanding of pain originates in neonatal experience and is not merely a verbally determined phenomenon. We also challenge the definition of pain as a merely sensory message related to peripheral tissue trauma. We aim to move beyond this definition by considering the relationship between the centre (Central Nervous System and periphery, taking into account certain phenomena such as phantom limbs and interoception. We show that pain helps an individual to develop a sense of awareness of himself immersed in a social context, and is thus a complex and adaptive phenomenon, that supports bodily integrity and social behavior.

  2. Noisy cooperative intermittent processes: From blinking quantum dots to human consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allegrini, Paolo; Paradisi, Paolo; Menicucci, Danilo; Bedini, Remo; Gemignani, Angelo; Fronzoni, Leone

    2011-07-01

    We study the superposition of a non-Poisson renewal process with the presence of a superimposed Poisson noise. The non-Poisson renewals mark the passage between meta-stable states in system with self-organization. We propose methods to measure the amount of information due to the two independent processes independently, and we see that a superficial study based on the survival probabilities yield stretched-exponential relaxations. Our method is in fact able to unravel the inverse-power law relaxation of the isolated non-Poisson processes, even when noise is present. We provide examples of this behavior in system of diverse nature, from blinking nano-crystals to weak turbulence. Finally we focus our discussion on events extracted from human electroencephalograms, and we discuss their connection with emerging properties of integrated neural dynamics, i.e. consciousness.

  3. Human Terrain Teams: An Enabler for Judge Advocates and Paralegals

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Dan Tanabe

    2010-01-01

      [...] the Future Concepts Directorate (FCD) offers this practice note to identify and describe an additional enabler judge advocates and paralegals can leverage to accomplish their complex missions when deployed...

  4. "Urban Fossils": a project enabling reflections concerning human impact on planet Earth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lozar, Francesca; Delfino, Massimo; Magagna, Alessandra; Ferrero, Elena; Cirilli, Francesca; Bernardi, Massimo; Giardino, Marco

    2016-04-01

    Paleontology is taught in schools and is often the subject of documentaries and newspaper articles, mainly dealing with exceptional findings or exotic localities. As such, most students and adults have no opportunity to find real fossils in their daily lives, which is usually spent in urban environments. On the other hand, the projects of active dissemination of paleontology have to take into account the rules governing the collection of fossils and the fact that these are generally rare and not easily accessible. As geologists it is important to involve people in understanding the implications of this subject, by stimulating their involvement in current research. This is an occasion for us to be in touch with society and therefore to reflect on the values upon which we base our research projects. In this framework, we agree that nowadays a geoethical approach to the geosphere-society relationship is necessary also to improve public awareness of the interactions between human activities and the geosphere. "Urban Fossils" offers this opportunity: by actively reflecting on the processes enabling fossilization, nowadays and in the geological past, and by experiencing "fossil hunting" as an amusing search in urban environments, the project improves the awareness that mankind is an active "geological" agent impacting on our planet. The idea of questing and registering traces of "past actions" recorded in asphalt and concrete pavements and roads (bottle caps and bolts, but also traces of humans and other animals, load left by scaffoldings etc.) stimulate the participants to reflect on fossilization processes, on the amount of information that fossils provide us, and on the huge impact of human traces on urban "soils". "Urban Fossils" started as a photographic project by Francesca Cirilli, and developed into a photo contest, a travelling exhibition, and a book. The exhibition is composed of selected pictures and has been organized in collaboration with the project PROGEO

  5. [Neural representation of human body schema and corporeal self-consciousness].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naito, Eiichi; Morita, Tomoyo

    2014-04-01

    The human brain processes every sensation evoked by altered posture and builds up a constantly changing postural model of the body. This is called a body schema, and somatic signals originating from skeletal muscles and joints, i.e. proprioceptive signals, largely contribute its formation. Recent neuroimaging techniques have revealed neuronal substrates for human body schema. A dynamic limb position model seems to be computed in the central motor network (represented by the primary motor cortex). Here, proprioceptive (kinesthetic) signals from muscle spindles are transformed into motor commands, which may underlie somatic perception of limb movement and facilitate its efficient motor control. Somatic signals originating from different body parts are integrated in the course of hierarchical somatosensory processing, and activity in higher-order somatosensory parietal cortices is capable of representing a postural model of the entire body. The left fronto-parietal network associates internal motor representation with external object representation, allowing the embodiment of external objects. In contrast, the right fronto-parietal regions connected by the most inferior branch of superior longitudinal fasciculus fibers seem to have the functions of monitoring bodily states and updating body schema. We hypothesize that activity in these right-sided fronto-parietal regions is deeply involved in corporeal self-consciousness.

  6. Categorial Ontology of Complex Systems, Meta-Systems and Levels: The Emergence of Life, Human Consciousness and Society

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James F. Glazebrook

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Relational structures of organisms and the human mind are naturally represented in terms of novel variable topology concepts, non-Abelian categories and Higher Dimensional Algebra{ relatively new concepts that would be defined in
    this tutorial paper. A unifying theme of local-to-global approaches to organismic development, evolution and human consciousness leads to novel patterns of relations that emerge in super- and ultra- complex systems in terms of compositions of local procedures [1]. The claim is defended in this paper that human consciousness is unique and should be viewed as an ultra-complex, global process of processes, at a meta-level not sub{summed by, but compatible with, human brain dynamics [2]-[5]. The emergence of consciousness and its existence
    are considered to be dependent upon an extremely complex structural and functional unit with an asymmetric network topology and connectivities{the human brain. However, the appearance of human consciousness is shown to be critically dependent upon societal co-evolution, elaborate language-symbolic communication and `virtual', higher dimensional, non{commutative processes involving separate space and time perceptions. Theories of the mind are approached from the theory of levels and ultra-complexity viewpoints that throw
    new light on previous semantic models in cognitive science. Anticipatory systems and complex causality at the top levels of reality are discussed in the context of psychology, sociology and ecology. A paradigm shift towards non-commutative, or more generally, non-Abelian theories of highly complex dynamics [6] is suggested to unfold now in physics, mathematics, life and cognitive sciences, thus leading to the realizations of higher dimensional algebras in neurosciences and psychology, as well as in human genomics, bioinformatics and interactomics. The presence of strange attractors in modern society dynamics gives rise to very serious concerns for the future

  7. Consciousness: a neurological perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavanna, Andrea E; Shah, Sachin; Eddy, Clare M; Williams, Adrian; Rickards, Hugh

    2011-01-01

    Consciousness is a state so essentially entwined with human experience, yet so difficult to conceptually define and measure. In this article, we explore how a bidimensional model of consciousness involving both level of arousal and subjective awareness of the contents of consciousness can be used to differentiate a range of healthy and altered conscious states. These include the different sleep stages of healthy individuals and the altered states of consciousness associated with neurological conditions such as epilepsy, vegetative state and coma. In particular, we discuss how arousal and awareness are positively correlated in normal physiological states with the exception of REM sleep, while a disturbance in this relationship is characteristic of vegetative state, minimally conscious state, complex partial seizures and sleepwalking.

  8. Consciousness: A Neurological Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea E. Cavanna

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Consciousness is a state so essentially entwined with human experience, yet so difficult to conceptually define and measure. In this article, we explore how a bidimensional model of consciousness involving both level of arousal and subjective awareness of the contents of consciousness can be used to differentiate a range of healthy and altered conscious states. These include the different sleep stages of healthy individuals and the altered states of consciousness associated with neurological conditions such as epilepsy, vegetative state and coma. In particular, we discuss how arousal and awareness are positively correlated in normal physiological states with the exception of REM sleep, while a disturbance in this relationship is characteristic of vegetative state, minimally conscious state, complex partial seizures and sleepwalking.

  9. THE LINGUISTIC CONSCIOUSNESS AS AN OBJECT OF STUDIES OF THE HUMANITIES PARADIGM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana Yurievna PANTELEEVA

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The article discusses the paradigms of linguistic con-sciousness in different sciences. The use of terminological instrument in psychology, philosophy and culturology, which reflects the system of linguistic consciousness cor-relations, allows to express its cognitive paradigms. It is shown, that for defining linguistic consciousness charac-teristics it is necessary to consider the principle of unity of the mentality language, which allows to imply the condi-tions of coexistence of communication objects: the sense-pragmatic formation of the life-world in the discourse.

  10. Uma abordagem naturalista da consciência humana A naturalistic approach to human consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfredo Pereira Júnior

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Abordo neste trabalho alguns dos principais problemas filosóficos concernentes a uma concepção naturalista da consciência humana, assim como algumas evidências disponíveis na neuropsicologia e neurofisiologia, sobre a relação entre atividade cerebral e experiência consciente. Inicialmente faço uma revisão sobre a definição de "consciência", seu estatuto filosófico e relação com os processos emocionais, e proponho três condições para sua atribuição a um sistema físico. Em seguida, identifico diferentes modalidades de consciência, e seus correlatos cerebrais em diferentes escalas espaciais e temporais. Finalmente, discuto possíveis mecanismos biofísicos subjacentes aos processos conscientes.This essay discusses some central philosophical problems concerning the naturalistic concept of consciousness, as well as evidence from neuropsychology and neurophysiology regarding the relation of brain activity and conscious experience. Initially I review the problem of defining "consciousness", the philosophical approach to the phenomenon and its relation to emotional processes. The next step is a proposal of three conditions for the attribution of consciousness to physical systems. In the following section, I identify different modalities of consciousness and their respective neural correlates in different spatial and temporal scales. Finally, I discuss possible biophysical mechanisms underlying conscious processing.

  11. Consciousness, brain, neuroplasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Askenasy, Jean; Lehmann, Joseph

    2013-01-01

    Subjectivity, intentionality, self-awareness and will are major components of consciousness in human beings. Changes in consciousness and its content following different brain processes and malfunction have long been studied. Cognitive sciences assume that brain activities have an infrastructure, but there is also evidence that consciousness itself may change this infrastructure. The two-way influence between brain and consciousness has been at the center of philosophy and less so, of science. This so-called bottom-up and top-down interrelationship is controversial and is the subject of our article. We would like to ask: how does it happen that consciousness may provoke structural changes in the brain? The living brain means continuous changes at the synaptic level with every new experience, with every new process of learning, memorizing or mastering new and existing skills. Synapses are generated and dissolved, while others are preserved, in an ever-changing process of so-called neuroplasticity. Ongoing processes of synaptic reinforcements and decay occur during wakefulness when consciousness is present, but also during sleep when it is mostly absent. We suggest that consciousness influences brain neuroplasticity both during wakefulness as well as sleep in a top-down way. This means that consciousness really activates synaptic flow and changes brain structures and functional organization. The dynamic impact of consciousness on brain never stops despite the relative stationary structure of the brain. Such a process can be a target for medical intervention, e.g., by cognitive training.

  12. Consciousness, brain, neuroplasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Jacques Marcel Askenasy

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Subjectivity, intentionality, self-awareness and will are major components of consciousness in human beings. Changes in consciousness and its content following different brain processes and malfunction have long been studied. Cognitive sciences assume that brain activities have an infrastructure, but there is also evidence that consciousness itself may change this infrastructure. The two-way influence between brain and consciousness has been at the center of philosophy and less so, of science. This so-called bottom-up and top-down interrelationship is controversial and is the subject of our article. We would like to ask: how does it happen that consciousness may provoke structural changes in the brain?The living brain means continuous changes at the synaptic level with every new experience, with every new process of learning, memorizing or mastering new and existing skills. Synapses are generated and dissolved, while others are preserved, in an ever-changing process of so-called neuroplasticity. Ongoing processes of synaptic reinforcements and decay occur during wakefulness when consciousness is present, but also during sleep when it is mostly absent.We suggest that consciousness influences brain neuroplasticity both during wakefulness as well as sleep in a top-down way. This means that consciousness really activates synaptic flow and changes brain structures and functional organization. The dynamic impact of consciousness on brain never stops despite the relative stationary structure of the brain. Such a process can be a target for medical intervention e.g. by cognitive training.

  13. A human brainstem glioma xenograft model enabled for bioluminescence imaging

    OpenAIRE

    Hashizume, Rintaro; Ozawa, Tomoko; Dinca, Eduard B.; Banerjee, Anuradha; Prados, Michael D.; James, Charles D.; Gupta, Nalin

    2009-01-01

    Despite the use of radiation and chemotherapy, the prognosis for children with diffuse brainstem gliomas is extremely poor. There is a need for relevant brainstem tumor models that can be used to test new therapeutic agents and delivery systems in pre-clinical studies. We report the development of a brainstem-tumor model in rats and the application of bioluminescence imaging (BLI) for monitoring tumor growth and response to therapy as part of this model. Luciferase-modified human glioblastoma...

  14. Virus-Enabled Biosensor for Human Serum Albumin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogata, Alana F; Edgar, Joshua M; Majumdar, Sudipta; Briggs, Jeffrey S; Patterson, Shae V; Tan, Ming X; Kudlacek, Stephan T; Schneider, Christine A; Weiss, Gregory A; Penner, Reginald M

    2017-01-17

    The label-free detection of human serum albumin (HSA) in aqueous buffer is demonstrated using a simple, monolithic, two-electrode electrochemical biosensor. In this device, both millimeter-scale electrodes are coated with a thin layer of a composite containing M13 virus particles and the electronically conductive polymer poly(3,4-ethylenedioxy thiophene) or PEDOT. These virus particles, engineered to selectively bind HSA, serve as receptors in this biosensor. The resistance component of the electrical impedance, Zre, measured between these two electrodes provides electrical transduction of HSA binding to the virus-PEDOT film. The analysis of sample volumes as small as 50 μL is made possible using a microfluidic cell. Upon exposure to HSA, virus-PEDOT films show a prompt increase in Zre within 5 s and a stable Zre signal within 15 min. HSA concentrations in the range from 100 nM to 5 μM are detectable. Sensor-to-sensor reproducibility of the HSA measurement is characterized by a coefficient-of-variance (COV) ranging from 2% to 8% across this entire concentration range. In addition, virus-PEDOT sensors successfully detected HSA in synthetic urine solutions.

  15. Human olfactory consciousness and cognition: its unusual features may not result from unusual functions but from limited neocortical processing resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevenson, Richard J.; Attuquayefio, Tuki

    2013-01-01

    Human and animal olfactory perception is shaped both by functional demands and by various environmental constraints seemingly peculiar to chemical stimuli. These demands and constraints may have generated a sensory system that is cognitively distinct from the major senses. In this article we identify these various functional demands and constraints, and examine whether they can be used to account for olfaction's unique cognitive features on a case-by-case basis. We then use this as grounds to argue that specific conscious processes do have functional value, a finding that naturally emerges when a comparative approach to consciousness across the senses is adopted. More generally, we conclude that certain peculiar features of olfactory cognition may owe more to limited neocortical processing resources, than they do to the challenges faced by perceiving chemical stimuli. PMID:24198808

  16. Francesco Bonatelli: A Critical (Experience-grounded Approach to Consciousness and Human Subject between Spiritualism and Positivism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Davide Poggi

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available In the context of nineteenth-century philosophical reflection, Francesco Bonatelli (1830-1911 set himself the following goal: to defend the pillars of Spiritualism (the existence of a human subject with intellectual or supra-sensitive cognitive functions and ontology (the notions of esse and substantia through an careful examination of psychic contents and consciousness, while closely contesting both the psychology and the psychophysiology of Positivism (without rejecting its results in toto and Spiritualism itself (with all its uncritical assumptions and unnecessary metaphysical speculations. In works such as Pensiero e conoscenza (1864, La coscienza e il meccanesimo interiore (1872 and Percezione e pensiero (1892-1895 Bonatelli puts forward his “critical experience-grounded philosophy” and proposes an original solution to the problem of the nature of the subject, (self-consciousness and its unity, using an analysis of “sentiments” to reveal the inseparable tangle of the cognitive and ontological dimensions of the self.

  17. The evolution of consciousness

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stapp, H.P.

    1996-08-16

    It is argued that the principles of classical physics are inimical to the development of an adequate science of consciousness. The problem is that insofar as the classical principles are valid consciousness can have no effect on the behavior, and hence on the survival prospects, of the organisms in which it inheres. Thus within the classical framework it is not possible to explain in natural terms the development of consciousness to the high-level form found in human beings. In quantum theory, on the other hand, consciousness can be dynamically efficacious: quantum theory does allow consciousness to influence behavior, and thence to evolve in accordance with the principles of natural selection. However, this evolutionary requirement places important constraints upon the details of the formulation of the quantum dynamical principles.

  18. Consciousness and psychotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryle, A

    1994-06-01

    The origins and resistance to change of neurotic procedures are considered with particular reference to the nature and role of consciousness. It is argued that the traditional opposition between conscious and unconscious systems provides an unsatisfactory model. The crucial role of language in the formation of human self-consciousness is emphasized. The restricted procedural repertoire of neurotic subjects, and their deficient self-consciousness, can be attributed to a number of factors. It is argued that the main use of consciousness in therapy should be to heighten the patient's awareness of his or her damaging or restricting procedural repertoire through the process of reformulation, which allows recognition, and in due course revision to be achieved.

  19. Inner Consciousness Tindakan Nabi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moh. Helmi Umam

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The article is written to examine deeds and actions of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him within inner consciousness analysis of Husserl’s phenomenology. The article is formulated to explore the significance of phenomenology of religious study, Prophet’s deeds as well as his inner consciousness, and inner consciousness analysis of Prophet’s deeds. This article is written using phenomenological method, i.e. a comprehensive interpretation about the source of information or object’s phenomenon as long as it can be traced. Inner consciousness of Prophet’s actions sees that his deeds in deciding important religious pronouncements were results of long-term memory based on divine and social argumentations, which have came into Prophet’s consciousness as a human.

  20. Consciousness in the Study of Human Life and Experience: "Higher Aspects" and Their Nature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witz, Klaus G.; Lee, Hyunju; Huang, Wanju

    2010-01-01

    This article deals with the consciousness in a person when one tries to understand her more deeply and as a whole, as is done in studies using the "Participant as Ally-Essentialist Portraiture" approach, and focuses on "higher aspects" or moral-ethical, metaphysical, social and religious ideals, values, commitments, or inspiration in a person. The…

  1. A new dimension in evolution: Impacts of human consciousness on sustainability - and beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles M. Jr. McKenna

    2006-01-01

    Starting with the concepts of the “noosphere” -- the sphere of thought -- and the evolution of consciousness developed by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin in the first half of the last century, we will introduce a hypothesis declaring the interdependence of the noosphere with global systems, and extrapolate to new perceptions that these concepts, and others which seem to...

  2. George Herbert Mead on consciousness: antidote to Cartesian absurdities?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Willert, Søren

    experience; it is shared by humans and subhuman animals alike; (2) consciousness of environmental experience; Mead names this consciousness aspect awareness; it is exclusively human; (3) the peculiar sensed qualities attaching to consciousness, equalling what is today named qualia. Descartes...

  3. Alterations of consciousness and mystical-type experiences after acute LSD in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liechti, Matthias E; Dolder, Patrick C; Schmid, Yasmin

    2017-05-01

    Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is used recreationally and in clinical research. Acute mystical-type experiences that are acutely induced by hallucinogens are thought to contribute to their potential therapeutic effects. However, no data have been reported on LSD-induced mystical experiences and their relationship to alterations of consciousness. Additionally, LSD dose- and concentration-response functions with regard to alterations of consciousness are lacking. We conducted two placebo-controlled, double-blind, cross-over studies using oral administration of 100 and 200 μg LSD in 24 and 16 subjects, respectively. Acute effects of LSD were assessed using the 5 Dimensions of Altered States of Consciousness (5D-ASC) scale after both doses and the Mystical Experience Questionnaire (MEQ) after 200 μg. On the MEQ, 200 μg LSD induced mystical experiences that were comparable to those in patients who underwent LSD-assisted psychotherapy but were fewer than those reported for psilocybin in healthy subjects or patients. On the 5D-ASC scale, LSD produced higher ratings of blissful state, insightfulness, and changed meaning of percepts after 200 μg compared with 100 μg. Plasma levels of LSD were not positively correlated with its effects, with the exception of ego dissolution at 100 μg. Mystical-type experiences were infrequent after LSD, possibly because of the set and setting used in the present study. LSD may produce greater or different alterations of consciousness at 200 μg (i.e., a dose that is currently used in psychotherapy in Switzerland) compared with 100 μg (i.e., a dose used in imaging studies). Ego dissolution may reflect plasma levels of LSD, whereas more robustly induced effects of LSD may not result in such associations.

  4. Human Development X: Explanation of Macroevolution — Top-Down Evolution Materializes Consciousness. The Origin of Metamorphosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tyge Dahl Hermansen

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we first give a short discussion of the macroevolution viewing life as information-directed, complex, dynamic systems. On this basis, we give our explanation of the origin of life and discuss the top-down evolution of molecules, proteins, and macroevolution. We discuss these subjects according to our new holistic biological paradigm. In view of this, we discuss the macroevolution of the organism, the species, the biosphere, and human society. After this, we discuss the shift in evolution from natural selection to a new proposed process of nature called the “metamorphous top-down” evolution. We discuss the capability of the evolutionary shift to govern some of the processes that lead to the formation of new species. We discuss the mechanisms we think are behind this proposed shift in evolution and conclude that this event is able to explain the huge biological diversity of nature in combination with evolutionary natural selection. We also discuss this event of nature as an isolated, but integrated, part of the universe. We propose the most important genetic and biochemical process that we think is behind the evolutionary shift as a complicated symbiosis of mechanisms leading to metamorphosis in all biological individuals, from bacteria to humans. The energetic superorbital that manifests the consciousness governs all these processes through quantum chemical activity. This is the key to evolutionary shift through the consciousness, and we propose to call this process “adult human metamorphosis”.

  5. MODELING CONSCIOUSNESS

    OpenAIRE

    Taylor, J G

    2009-01-01

    We present tentative answers to three questions: firstly, what is to be assumed about the structure of the brain in attacking the problem of modeling consciousness; secondly, what is it about consciousness that is attempting to be modeled; and finally, what is taken on board the modeling enterprise, if anything, from the vast works by philosophers about the nature of mind.

  6. Control consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandik, Pete

    2010-10-01

    Control consciousness is the awareness or experience of seeming to be in control of one's actions. One view, which I will be arguing against in the present paper, is that control consciousness is a form of sensory consciousness. In such a view, control consciousness is exhausted by sensory elements such as tactile and proprioceptive information. An opposing view, which I will be arguing for, is that sensory elements cannot be the whole story and must be supplemented by direct contributions of nonsensory, motor elements. More specifically, I will be arguing for the view that the neural basis of control consciousness is constituted by states of recurrent activation in relatively intermediate levels of the motor hierarchy. Copyright © 2010 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  7. Conscious Belief

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Pitt

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Tim Crane maintains that beliefs cannot be conscious because they persist in the absence of consciousness. Conscious judgments can share their contents with beliefs, and their occurrence can be evidence for what one believes; but they cannot be beliefs, because they don’t persist. I challenge Crane’s premise that belief attributions to the temporarily unconscious are literally true. To say of an unconscious agent that she believes that p is like saying that she sings well. To say she sings well is to say that when she sings, her singing is good. To say that she believes that p is (roughly to say that when she consciously considers the content that p she consciously affirms (believes it. I also argue that the phenomenal view of intentional content Crane appears to endorse prima facie commits him to the view, at least controversial, perhaps incoherent, that there is unconscious phenomenology (the intentional contents of unconscious beliefs.

  8. Human development II: We Need an Integrated Theory for Matter, Life and Consciousness to Understand Life and Healing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sören Ventegodt

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available For almost a decade, we have experimented with supporting the philosophical development of severely ill patients to induce recovery and spontaneous healing. Recently, we have observed a new pattern of extremely rapid, spontaneous healing that apparently can facilitate even the spontaneous remission of cancer and the spontaneous recovery of mental diseases like schizophrenia and borderline schizophrenia. Our working hypothesis is that the accelerated healing is a function of the patient’s brain-mind and body-mind coming closer together due to the development of what we call “deep” cosmology. To understand and describe what happens at a biological level, we have suggested naming the process adult human metamorphosis, a possibility that is opened by the human genome showing full generic equipment for metamorphosis. To understand the mechanistic details in the complicated interaction between consciousness and biology, we need an adequate theory for biological information. In a series of papers, we propose what we call “holistic biology for holistic medicine”. We suggest that a relatively simple model based on interacting wholenesses instead of isolated parts can shed a new light on a number of difficult issues that we need to explain and understand in biology and medicine in order to understand and use metamorphosis in the holistic medical clinic. We aim to give a holistic theoretical interpretation of biological phenomena at large, morphogenesis, evolution, immune system regulation (self-nonself discrimination, brain function, consciousness, and health in particular. We start at the most fundamental problem: what is biological information at the subcellular, cellular, and supracellular levels if we presume that it is the same phenomenon on all levels (using Occam's razor, and how can this be described scientifically? The problems we address are all connected to the information flow in the functioning, living organism: function of the brain

  9. Human development II: we need an integrated theory for matter, life and consciousness to understand life and healing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ventegodt, Søren; Hermansen, Tyge Dahl; Nielsen, Maj Lyck; Clausen, Birgitte; Merrick, Joav

    2006-07-06

    For almost a decade, we have experimented with supporting the philosophical development of severely ill patients to induce recovery and spontaneous healing. Recently, we have observed a new pattern of extremely rapid, spontaneous healing that apparently can facilitate even the spontaneous remission of cancer and the spontaneous recovery of mental diseases like schizophrenia and borderline schizophrenia. Our working hypothesis is that the accelerated healing is a function of the patient's brain-mind and body-mind coming closer together due to the development of what we call "deep" cosmology. To understand and describe what happens at a biological level, we have suggested naming the process adult human metamorphosis, a possibility that is opened by the human genome showing full generic equipment for metamorphosis. To understand the mechanistic details in the complicated interaction between consciousness and biology, we need an adequate theory for biological information. In a series of papers, we propose what we call "holistic biology for holistic medicine". We suggest that a relatively simple model based on interacting wholenesses instead of isolated parts can shed a new light on a number of difficult issues that we need to explain and understand in biology and medicine in order to understand and use metamorphosis in the holistic medical clinic. We aim to give a holistic theoretical interpretation of biological phenomena at large, morphogenesis, evolution, immune system regulation (self-nonself discrimination), brain function, consciousness, and health in particular. We start at the most fundamental problem: what is biological information at the subcellular, cellular, and supracellular levels if we presume that it is the same phenomenon on all levels (using Occam's razor), and how can this be described scientifically? The problems we address are all connected to the information flow in the functioning, living organism: function of the brain and consciousness, the

  10. Defining the states of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tassi, P; Muzet, A

    2001-03-01

    Consciousness remains an elusive concept due to the difficulty to define what has been regarded for many years as a subjective experience, therefore irrelevant for scientific study. Recent development in this field of research has allowed to provide some new insight to a possible way to define consciousness. Going through the extensive literature in this domain, several perspectives are proposed to define this concept. (1) Consciousness and Attention may not reflect the same process. (2) Consciousness during wake and sleep may not involve the same mechanisms. (3) Besides physiological states of consciousness, human beings can experience modified states of consciousness either by self-training (transcendental meditation, hypnosis, etc.) or by drug intake (hallucinogens, anaesthetics, etc.). Altogether, we address the question of a more precise terminology, given the theoretical weight words can convey. To this respect, we propose different definitions for concepts like consciousness, vigilance, arousal and alertness as candidates to separate functional entities.

  11. The large-scale functional connectivity correlates of consciousness and arousal during the healthy and pathological human sleep cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tagliazucchi, Enzo; van Someren, Eus J W

    2017-06-12

    Advances in neuroimaging have greatly improved our understanding of human sleep from a systems neuroscience perspective. However, cognition and awareness are reduced during sleep, hindering the applicability of standard task-based paradigms. Methods recently developed to study spontaneous brain activity fluctuations have proven useful to overcome this limitation. In this review, we focus on the concept of functional connectivity (FC, i.e. statistical covariance between brain activity signals) and its application to functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data acquired during sleep. We discuss how FC analyses of endogenous brain activity during sleep have contributed towards revealing the large-scale neural networks associated with arousal and conscious awareness. We argue that the neuroimaging of deep sleep can be used to evaluate the predictions of theories of consciousness; at the same time, we highlight some apparent limitations of deep sleep as an experimental model of unconsciousness. In resting state fMRI experiments, the onset of sleep can be regarded as the object of interest but also as an undesirable confound. We discuss a series of articles contributing towards the disambiguation of wakefulness from sleep on the basis of fMRI-derived dynamic FC, and then outline a plan for the development of more general and data-driven sleep classifiers. To complement our review of studies investigating the brain systems of arousal and consciousness during healthy sleep, we then turn to pathological and abnormal sleep patterns. We review the current literature on sleep deprivation studies and sleep disorders, adopting the critical stance that lack of independent vigilance monitoring during fMRI experiments is liable for false positives related to atypical sleep propensity in clinical and sleep-deprived populations. Finally, we discuss multimodal neuroimaging as a promising future direction to achieve a better understanding of the large-scale FC of the brain during

  12. The rise of machine consciousness: studying consciousness with computational models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reggia, James A

    2013-08-01

    Efforts to create computational models of consciousness have accelerated over the last two decades, creating a field that has become known as artificial consciousness. There have been two main motivations for this controversial work: to develop a better scientific understanding of the nature of human/animal consciousness and to produce machines that genuinely exhibit conscious awareness. This review begins by briefly explaining some of the concepts and terminology used by investigators working on machine consciousness, and summarizes key neurobiological correlates of human consciousness that are particularly relevant to past computational studies. Models of consciousness developed over the last twenty years are then surveyed. These models are largely found to fall into five categories based on the fundamental issue that their developers have selected as being most central to consciousness: a global workspace, information integration, an internal self-model, higher-level representations, or attention mechanisms. For each of these five categories, an overview of past work is given, a representative example is presented in some detail to illustrate the approach, and comments are provided on the contributions and limitations of the methodology. Three conclusions are offered about the state of the field based on this review: (1) computational modeling has become an effective and accepted methodology for the scientific study of consciousness, (2) existing computational models have successfully captured a number of neurobiological, cognitive, and behavioral correlates of conscious information processing as machine simulations, and (3) no existing approach to artificial consciousness has presented a compelling demonstration of phenomenal machine consciousness, or even clear evidence that artificial phenomenal consciousness will eventually be possible. The paper concludes by discussing the importance of continuing work in this area, considering the ethical issues it raises

  13. Human Development VIII: A Theory of “Deep” Quantum Chemistry and Cell Consciousness: Quantum Chemistry Controls Genes and Biochemistry to Give Cells and Higher Organisms Consciousness and Complex Behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Søren Ventegodt

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Deep quantum chemistry is a theory of deeply structured quantum fields carrying the biological information of the cell, making it able to remember, intend, represent the inner and outer world for comparison, understand what it “sees”, and make choices on its structure, form, behavior and division. We suggest that deep quantum chemistry gives the cell consciousness and all the qualities and abilities related to consciousness. We use geometric symbolism, which is a pre-mathematical and philosophical approach to problems that cannot yet be handled mathematically. Using Occam’s razor we have started with the simplest model that works; we presume this to be a many-dimensional, spiral fractal. We suggest that all the electrons of the large biological molecules’ orbitals make one huge “cell-orbital”, which is structured according to the spiral fractal nature of quantum fields. Consciousness of single cells, multi cellular structures as e.g. organs, multi-cellular organisms and multi-individual colonies (like ants and human societies can thus be explained by deep quantum chemistry. When biochemical activity is strictly controlled by the quantum-mechanical super-orbital of the cell, this orbital can deliver energetic quanta as biological information, distributed through many fractal levels of the cell to guide form and behavior of an individual single or a multi-cellular organism. The top level of information is the consciousness of the cell or organism, which controls all the biochemical processes. By this speculative work inspired by Penrose and Hameroff we hope to inspire other researchers to formulate more strict and mathematically correct hypothesis on the complex and coherence nature of matter, life and consciousness.

  14. Attention Networks and Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael ePosner

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The term consciousness is an important one in the vernacular of the western literature in many fields. It is no wonder that scientists have assumed that consciousness will be found as a component of the human brain and that we will come to understand its neural basis. However, there is rather little in common between consciousness as the neurologist would use it to diagnose the vegetative state, how the feminist would use it to support raising male consciousness of the economic plight of women and as the philosopher would use it when defining the really hard question of the subjective state of awareness induced by sensory qualities. When faced with this kind of problem it is usual to subdivide the term into more manageable perhaps partly operational definitions. Three meanings that capture aspects of consciousness are: (1 the neurology of the state of mind allowing coherent orientation to time and place (2 the selection of sensory or memorial information for awareness and (3 the voluntary control over overt responses. In each of these cases the mechanisms of consciousness overlap with one or more of the attentional networks that have been studied with the methods of cognitive neuroscience. In this paper we explore t

  15. The Conscious Individual

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashok Natarajan

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This article traces the evolutionary development of human consciousness and its increasingly complex and sophisticated organization as human personality from the instinctive behavior of the animal and the subconscious conformity characteristic of early forms of human civilization through progressive stages of transition from physical to social to mental levels of awareness and from the undifferentiated social consciousness of the member of the tribe to the emergence of independent thinking, creativity and uniqueness, which characterize the Conscious Individual. The individual and the collective evolve in tandem. The collective imparts its acquired capacities to its members. The emerging individual acts as a catalyst to spur further development of the collective. Each stage of the journey is the same in essence and structure at progressively higher levels of consciousness and organization. The higher the level achieved by the collective in terms of quality and complexity, the greater the knowledge and organization demanded of the individual. The article ends by cataloging crucial points at which modern society is mired in outmoded conceptions, superstitious beliefs, pre-modern values and archaic institutions that obstruct humanity’s further evolution from problems and limitations to ever-expanding opportunities. The conscious individual is the key to that process.

  16. Consciousness CLEARS the mind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grossberg, Stephen

    2007-11-01

    A full understanding of consciousness requires that we identify the brain processes from which conscious experiences emerge. What are these processes, and what is their utility in supporting successful adaptive behaviors? Adaptive Resonance Theory (ART) predicted a functional link between processes of Consciousness, Learning, Expectation, Attention, Resonance and Synchrony (CLEARS), including the prediction that "all conscious states are resonant states". This connection clarifies how brain dynamics enable a behaving individual to autonomously adapt in real time to a rapidly changing world. The present article reviews theoretical considerations that predicted these functional links, how they work, and some of the rapidly growing body of behavioral and brain data that have provided support for these predictions. The article also summarizes ART models that predict functional roles for identified cells in laminar thalamocortical circuits, including the six layered neocortical circuits and their interactions with specific primary and higher-order specific thalamic nuclei and nonspecific nuclei. These predictions include explanations of how slow perceptual learning can occur without conscious awareness, and why oscillation frequencies in the lower layers of neocortex are sometimes slower beta oscillations, rather than the higher-frequency gamma oscillations that occur more frequently in superficial cortical layers. ART traces these properties to the existence of intracortical feedback loops, and to reset mechanisms whereby thalamocortical mismatches use circuits such as the one from specific thalamic nuclei to nonspecific thalamic nuclei and then to layer 4 of neocortical areas via layers 1-to-5-to-6-to-4.

  17. The Neurogenetic Correlates of Consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grandy, John K.

    2013-09-01

    The neurogenetic correlates of consciousness (NgCC) is a new field of consciousness studies that focuses on genes that have an effect on or are involved in the continuum of neuron-based consciousness. A framework of consciousness based on the neural correlates of consciousness (NCC) has already been established by Francis Crick and Christof Kock. In this work I propose that there are NgCC underlying the NCC which are both active during the conscious experience. So how are genes involved? There are two significant connections between DNA and neurons that are involved in the conscious experience. First, any brain system can be adversely affected by underlying genetic abnormalities which can be expressed in an individual at birth, in adulthood, or later in life. Second, the DNA molecule does not lay dormant while the neuron runs on autopilot. DNA is active in translating and transcribing RNA and protein products that are utilized during neuron functioning. Without these products being continuously produced by the DNA during a conscious experience the neurons would cease to function correctly and be rendered unable to provide a continuum of human consciousness. Consequently, in addition to NCC, NgCC must be factored in when appreciating a conscious event. In this work I will discuss and explain some NgCC citing several examples.

  18. Frontier In-Situ Resource Utilization for Enabling Sustained Human Presence on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moses, Robert W.; Bushnell, Dennis M.

    2016-01-01

    The currently known resources on Mars are massive, including extensive quantities of water and carbon dioxide and therefore carbon, hydrogen and oxygen for life support, fuels and plastics and much else. The regolith is replete with all manner of minerals. In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) applicable frontier technologies include robotics, machine intelligence, nanotechnology, synthetic biology, 3-D printing/additive manufacturing and autonomy. These technologies combined with the vast natural resources should enable serious, pre- and post-human arrival ISRU to greatly increase reliability and safety and reduce cost for human colonization of Mars. Various system-level transportation concepts employing Mars produced fuel would enable Mars resources to evolve into a primary center of trade for the inner solar system for eventually nearly everything required for space faring and colonization. Mars resources and their exploitation via extensive ISRU are the key to a viable, safe and affordable, human presence beyond Earth. The purpose of this paper is four-fold: 1) to highlight the latest discoveries of water, minerals, and other materials on Mars that reshape our thinking about the value and capabilities of Mars ISRU; 2) to summarize the previous literature on Mars ISRU processes, equipment, and approaches; 3) to point to frontier ISRU technologies and approaches that can lead to safe and affordable human missions to Mars; and 4) to suggest an implementation strategy whereby the ISRU elements are phased into the mission campaign over time to enable a sustainable and increasing human presence on Mars.

  19. Consciousness extended

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carrara-Augustenborg, Claudia

    2012-01-01

    There is no consensus yet regarding a conceptualization of consciousness able to accommodate all the features of such complex phenomenon. Different theoretical and empirical models lend strength to both the occurrence of a non-accessible informational broadcast, and to the mobilization of specific...... brain areas responsible for the emergence of the individual´s explicit and variable access to given segments of such broadcast. Rather than advocating one model over others, this chapter proposes to broaden the conceptualization of consciousness by letting it embrace both mechanisms. Within...... such extended framework, I propose conceptual and functional distinctions between consciousness (global broadcast of information), awareness (individual´s ability to access the content of such broadcast) and unconsciousness (focally isolated neural activations). My hypothesis is that a demarcation in terms...

  20. Brain-mind dyad, human experience, the consciousness tetrad and lattice of mental operations: And further, The need to integrate knowledge from diverse disciplines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ajai R Singh

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Brain, Mind and Consciousness are the research concerns of psychiatrists, psychologists, neurologists, cognitive neuroscientists and philosophers. All of them are working in different and important ways to understand the workings of the brain, the mysteries of the mind and to grasp that elusive concept called consciousness. Although they are all justified in forwarding their respective researches, it is also necessary to integrate these diverse appearing understandings and try and get a comprehensive perspective that is, hopefully, more than the sum of their parts. There is also the need to understand what each one is doing, and by the other, to understand each other's basic and fundamental ideological and foundational underpinnings. This must be followed by a comprehensive and critical dialogue between the respective disciplines. Moreover, the concept of mind and consciousness in Indian thought needs careful delineation and critical/evidential enquiry to make it internationally relevant. The brain-mind dyad must be understood, with brain as the structural correlate of the mind, and mind as the functional correlate of the brain. To understand human experience, we need a triad of external environment, internal environment and a consciousness that makes sense of both. We need to evolve a consensus on the definition of consciousness, for which a working definition in the form of a Consciousness Tetrad of Default, Aware, Operational and Evolved Consciousness is presented. It is equally necessary to understand the connection between physical changes in the brain and mental operations, and thereby untangle and comprehend the lattice of mental operations. Interdisciplinary work and knowledge sharing, in an atmosphere of healthy give and take of ideas, and with a view to understand the significance of each other's work, and also to critically evaluate the present corpus of knowledge from these diverse appearing fields, and then carry forward from there

  1. Brain-Mind Dyad, Human Experience, the Consciousness Tetrad and Lattice of Mental Operations: And Further, The Need to Integrate Knowledge from Diverse Disciplines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Ajai R.; Singh, Shakuntala A.

    2011-01-01

    Brain, Mind and Consciousness are the research concerns of psychiatrists, psychologists, neurologists, cognitive neuroscientists and philosophers. All of them are working in different and important ways to understand the workings of the brain, the mysteries of the mind and to grasp that elusive concept called consciousness. Although they are all justified in forwarding their respective researches, it is also necessary to integrate these diverse appearing understandings and try and get a comprehensive perspective that is, hopefully, more than the sum of their parts. There is also the need to understand what each one is doing, and by the other, to understand each other’s basic and fundamental ideological and foundational underpinnings. This must be followed by a comprehensive and critical dialogue between the respective disciplines. Moreover, the concept of mind and consciousness in Indian thought needs careful delineation and critical/evidential enquiry to make it internationally relevant. The brain-mind dyad must be understood, with brain as the structural correlate of the mind, and mind as the functional correlate of the brain. To understand human experience, we need a triad of external environment, internal environment and a consciousness that makes sense of both. We need to evolve a consensus on the definition of consciousness, for which a working definition in the form of a Consciousness Tetrad of Default, Aware, Operational and Evolved Consciousness is presented. It is equally necessary to understand the connection between physical changes in the brain and mental operations, and thereby untangle and comprehend the lattice of mental operations. Interdisciplinary work and knowledge sharing, in an atmosphere of healthy give and take of ideas, and with a view to understand the significance of each other’s work, and also to critically evaluate the present corpus of knowledge from these diverse appearing fields, and then carry forward from there in a spirit of

  2. Brain-mind dyad, human experience, the consciousness tetrad and lattice of mental operations: and further, the need to integrate knowledge from diverse disciplines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Ajai R; Singh, Shakuntala A

    2011-01-01

    Brain, Mind and Consciousness are the research concerns of psychiatrists, psychologists, neurologists, cognitive neuroscientists and philosophers. All of them are working in different and important ways to understand the workings of the brain, the mysteries of the mind and to grasp that elusive concept called consciousness. Although they are all justified in forwarding their respective researches, it is also necessary to integrate these diverse appearing understandings and try and get a comprehensive perspective that is, hopefully, more than the sum of their parts. There is also the need to understand what each one is doing, and by the other, to understand each other's basic and fundamental ideological and foundational underpinnings. This must be followed by a comprehensive and critical dialogue between the respective disciplines. Moreover, the concept of mind and consciousness in Indian thought needs careful delineation and critical/evidential enquiry to make it internationally relevant. The brain-mind dyad must be understood, with brain as the structural correlate of the mind, and mind as the functional correlate of the brain. To understand human experience, we need a triad of external environment, internal environment and a consciousness that makes sense of both. We need to evolve a consensus on the definition of consciousness, for which a working definition in the form of a Consciousness Tetrad of Default, Aware, Operational and Evolved Consciousness is presented. It is equally necessary to understand the connection between physical changes in the brain and mental operations, and thereby untangle and comprehend the lattice of mental operations. Interdisciplinary work and knowledge sharing, in an atmosphere of healthy give and take of ideas, and with a view to understand the significance of each other's work, and also to critically evaluate the present corpus of knowledge from these diverse appearing fields, and then carry forward from there in a spirit of

  3. Impact of emotion on consciousness: positive stimuli enhance conscious reportability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristine Rømer Thomsen

    Full Text Available Emotion and reward have been proposed to be closely linked to conscious experience, but empirical data are lacking. The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC plays a central role in the hedonic dimension of conscious experience; thus potentially a key region in interactions between emotion and consciousness. Here we tested the impact of emotion on conscious experience, and directly investigated the role of the ACC. We used a masked paradigm that measures conscious reportability in terms of subjective confidence and objective accuracy in identifying the briefly presented stimulus in a forced-choice test. By manipulating the emotional valence (positive, neutral, negative and the presentation time (16 ms, 32 ms, 80 ms we measured the impact of these variables on conscious and subliminal (i.e. below threshold processing. First, we tested normal participants using face and word stimuli. Results showed that participants were more confident and accurate when consciously seeing happy versus sad/neutral faces and words. When stimuli were presented subliminally, we found no effect of emotion. To investigate the neural basis of this impact of emotion, we recorded local field potentials (LFPs directly in the ACC in a chronic pain patient. Behavioural findings were replicated: the patient was more confident and accurate when (consciously seeing happy versus sad faces, while no effect was seen in subliminal trials. Mirroring behavioural findings, we found significant differences in the LFPs after around 500 ms (lasting 30 ms in conscious trials between happy and sad faces, while no effect was found in subliminal trials. We thus demonstrate a striking impact of emotion on conscious experience, with positive emotional stimuli enhancing conscious reportability. In line with previous studies, the data indicate a key role of the ACC, but goes beyond earlier work by providing the first direct evidence of interaction between emotion and conscious experience in the human

  4. The standardized psychometric assessment of altered states of consciousness (ASCs) in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dittrich, A

    1998-07-01

    The APZ questionnaire was developed in order to explore hypotheses on ASCs. First -- in a series of 11 experiments using different induction methods on N = 393 healthy subjects -- the hypothesis was tested that ASCs have major dimensions in common irrespective of the mode of their induction. In the International Study on Altered States of Consciousness (ISASC) the external validity of the experimental results was assessed. The ISASC was carried out on a total of N = 1133 subjects in six countries. The main results of the experimental studies were corroborated in the field studies. The results can be summarized as follows: the common denominator of ASCs is described by three oblique dimensions, designated as "Oceanic Boundlessness (OSE)", "Dread of Ego Dissolution (AIA)" and "Visionary Restructuralization (VUS)". The reliability and validity of the scales are satisfactory. Tested versions of the APZ scales are available in English (UK, USA), German, Italian and Portuguese. Psychometrically as yet untested versions exist in Dutch, Finnish, French, Greek, Spanish and Russian. The APZ questionnaire has become the international standard for the assessment of ASCs, thus helping to integrate research. A psychometrically improved version exists in German (OAV questionnaire). The BETA questionnaire, which measures the dimensions "Vigilance Reduction (VIR)" and "Auditive Alteration (AVE)" is also available in German. These dimensions are most likely etiology-dependent.

  5. A philosophical theory on human communication and modern physics: e(,2)c(,2)H('2)T energy-exchange and consciousness-change toward humanism, healing, and transformation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenkins-Tate, Marnishia Laverne

    This dissertation addresses the need for a body of human communication theory that can be useful toward advancing personal and social transformation. Of the humanistic genre, it suggests that there is a need to promote humanism, healing, and personal transformation in the non-clinical settings of everyday living. Three questions guide the effort. First, it asks: what kind of human communication theory might describe some of the underlying dynamics of human interaction, while also suggesting ways to improve the quality of interactions of any related philosophical theory be grounded by some scientific discipline? Then finally, it asks: how might these proposed concepts be captured in a manner that can be useful to human beings in everyday human interaction? Extending the work of modern physics to the realm of human communication, the theory integrates conceptual aspects of quantum theory, relativity theory, communication accommodation theory, and various nonverbal communication theory. Then, it proposes the philosophical framework for a new body of theory which it calls the energy-exchange theory of human communication. Treating human beings as living forms of matter, it suggests that ``energy'' is the life-force that sustains all human beings, and that ``consciousness'' is that qualitative level of development at which energy manifests itself in the human experience. It proposes that human beings have the capacity to exchange energy and influence consciousness during the human communication process, and that these interactions can advance humanism, healing, and transformation-which it proposes are the higher states and levels of human consciousness. Thus, this research effort sought to know and to describe a phenomenon that is the interactive human being; and to suggest useful ways that this volitional being can know and transform itself through human interaction. With verisimilitude as a driving factor in describing human beings as communicators, the research is

  6. Neuroimaging of consciousness

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cavanna, Andrea Eugenio [Birmingham Univ. (United Kingdom). Dept. of Neuropsychiatry; UCL Institute of Neurology, London (United Kingdom). Sobell Dept. of Motor, Neuroscience and Movement Disorders; Nani, Andrea [Birmingham Univ. (United Kingdom). Research Group BSMHFT; Blumenfeld, Hal [Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT (United States). Depts. of Neurology, Neurobiology and Neurosurgery; Laureys, Steven (ed.) [Liege Univ. (Belgium). Cyclotron Research Centre

    2013-07-01

    An important reference work on a multidisciplinary and rapidly expanding area. Particular focus on the relevance of neuroimaging for the diagnosis and treatment of common neuropsychiatric disorders affecting consciousness. Written by world-class experts in the field. Relevant for clinicians, researchers, and scholars across different specialties. Within the field of neuroscience, the past few decades have witnessed an exponential growth of research into the brain mechanisms underlying both normal and pathological states of consciousness in humans. The development of sophisticated imaging techniques (above all fMRI and PET) to visualize and map brain activity in vivo has opened new avenues in our understanding of the pathological processes involved in common neuropsychiatric disorders affecting consciousness, such as epilepsy, coma, vegetative states, dissociative disorders, and dementia. This book presents the state of the art in neuroimaging exploration of the brain correlates of the alterations in consciousness across these conditions, with a particular focus on the potential applications for diagnosis and management. Although the book has a practical approach and is primarily targeted at neurologists, neuroradiologists, and psychiatrists, a wide range of researchers and health care professionals will find it an essential reference that explains the significance of neuroimaging of consciousness for clinical practice. Within the field of neuroscience, the past few decades have witnessed an exponential growth of research into the brain mechanisms underlying both normal and pathological states of consciousness in humans. The development of sophisticated imaging techniques (above all fMRI and PET) to visualize and map brain activity in vivo has opened new avenues in our understanding of the pathological processes involved in common neuropsychiatric disorders affecting consciousness, such as epilepsy, coma, vegetative states, dissociative disorders, and dementia. This

  7. Conscience and consciousness: a definition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vithoulkas, G; Muresanu, D F

    2014-03-15

    While consciousness has been examined extensively in its different aspects, like in philosophy, psychiatry, neurophysiology, neuroplasticity, etc., conscience though it is an equal important aspect of the human existence, which remains an unknown to a great degree as an almost transcendental aspect of the human mind. It has not been examined as thoroughly as consciousness and largely remains a "terra incognita" for its neurophysiology, brain topography, etc. Conscience and consciousness are part of a system of information that governs our experience and decision making process. The intent of this paper is to define these terms, to discuss about consciousness from both neurological and quantum physics point of view, the relationship between the dynamics of consciousness and neuroplasticity and to highlight the relationship between conscience, stress and health.

  8. Cortical and subcortical connectivity changes during decreasing levels of consciousness in humans: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study using propofol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mhuircheartaigh, Róisín Ní; Rosenorn-Lanng, Debbie; Wise, Richard; Jbabdi, Saad; Rogers, Richard; Tracey, Irene

    2010-07-07

    While ubiquitous, pharmacological manipulation of consciousness remains poorly defined and incompletely understood (Prys-Roberts, 1987). This retards anesthetic drug development, confounds interpretation of animal studies conducted under anesthesia, and limits the sensitivity of clinical monitors of cerebral function to intact perception. Animal and human studies propose a functional "switch" at the level of the thalamus, with inhibition of thalamo-cortical transmission characterizing loss of consciousness (Alkire et al., 2000; Mashour, 2006). We investigated the effects of propofol, widely used for anesthesia and sedation, on spontaneous and evoked cerebral activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). A series of auditory and noxious stimuli was presented to eight healthy volunteers at three behavioral states: awake, "sedated" and "unresponsive." Performance in a verbal task and the absence of a response to verbal stimulation, rather than propofol concentrations, were used to define these states clinically. Analysis of stimulus-related blood oxygenation level-dependent signal changes identified reductions in cortical and subcortical responses to auditory and noxious stimuli in sedated and unresponsive states. A specific reduction in activity within the putamen was noted and further investigated with functional connectivity analysis. Progressive failure to perceive or respond to auditory or noxious stimuli was associated with a reduction in the functional connectivity between the putamen and other brain regions, while thalamo-cortical connectivity was relatively preserved. This result has not been previously described and suggests that disruption of subcortical thalamo-regulatory systems may occur before, or even precipitate, failure of thalamo-cortical transmission with the induction of unconsciousness.

  9. Demodernizing Consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, Peter L.; And Others

    1973-01-01

    Youth culture and counterculture in contemporary Western societies are complex phenomena that may be viewed from a variety of social science perspectives. The authors analyze these cultures as embodiments of demodernizing consciousness with which they hold they have considerable firsthand experience. (RJ)

  10. Music and Consciousness: A Continuing Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, David; Clarke, Eric

    2014-01-01

    If there is a topic on which the humanities might make a distinctive claim, it is that of consciousness--an essential aspect of human being. And within the humanities, music might make its own claims in relation to both consciousness and being human. To investigate this connection, David Clarke and Eric Clarke brought together a wide variety of…

  11. Music and Consciousness: A Continuing Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, David; Clarke, Eric

    2014-01-01

    If there is a topic on which the humanities might make a distinctive claim, it is that of consciousness--an essential aspect of human being. And within the humanities, music might make its own claims in relation to both consciousness and being human. To investigate this connection, David Clarke and Eric Clarke brought together a wide variety of…

  12. Evolutionary continuity and personhood: Legal and therapeutic implications of animal consciousness and human unconsciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benvenuti, Anne

    Convergent lines of research in the biological sciences have made obsolete the commonly held assumption that humans are distinct from and superior to all other animals, a development predicted by evolutionary science. Cumulative evidence has both elevated other animals from the status of "dumb brutes" to that of fully sentient and intentional beings and has simultaneously discredited elevated claims of human rationality, intentionality, and freedom from the constraints experienced by other animals. It follows then that any theoretical model in which humans occupy the top of an imagined evolutionary hierarchy is untenable. This simple fact calls for a rethinking of foundational concepts in law and health sciences. A further cultural fallacy that is exposed by these converging lines of scientific evidence is the notion that the subjective inner and abstract dimension of human beings is the most true and valuable level of analysis for organizing human lives. In fact, our individual and collective minds are particularly vulnerable to elaborated false narratives that may be definitive of the particular forms of suffering that humans experience and seek to heal with modalities like psychoanalytic psychotherapies. I conclude with the suggestion that other animals may have the capacity to help us with this healing project, even as we are ethically bound to heal the suffering that we have collectively imposed upon them.

  13. Arterial flow regulator enables transplantation and growth of human fetal kidneys in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, N K; Gu, J; Gu, S; Osorio, R W; Concepcion, W; Gu, E

    2015-06-01

    Here we introduce a novel method of transplanting human fetal kidneys into adult rats. To overcome the technical challenges of fetal-to-adult organ transplantation, we devised an arterial flow regulator (AFR), consisting of a volume adjustable saline-filled cuff, which enables low-pressure human fetal kidneys to be transplanted into high-pressure adult rat hosts. By incrementally withdrawing saline from the AFR over time, blood flow entering the human fetal kidney was gradually increased until full blood flow was restored 30 days after transplantation. Human fetal kidneys were shown to dramatically increase in size and function. Moreover, rats which had all native renal mass removed 30 days after successful transplantation of the human fetal kidney were shown to have a mean survival time of 122 days compared to 3 days for control rats that underwent bilateral nephrectomy without a prior human fetal kidney transplant. These in vivo human fetal kidney models may serve as powerful platforms for drug testing and discovery.

  14. Consistency between recognition and behavior creates consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keita Inaba

    2004-08-01

    Full Text Available What is consciousness? Is it possible to create consciousness mechanically? Various studies have been performed in the fields of psychology and cerebral science to answer these questions. As of yet, however, no researchers have proposed a model capable of explaining the mind-body problem described by Descartes or replicating a consciousness as advanced as that of human beings. Ancient people believed that the consciousness resided in a Homunculus, a human in miniature who lived in the brain. It is no mystery that the ancients came up with such an idea; for consciousness has always been veiled in mystery, beyond the reach of our explorative powers. We can assert, however, that consciousness does not "live" in us, but "exists" in us. Insofar as the processes occurring inside the human brain are a product of the physical activity of the neurons that reside there, we believe that it should be possible to define consciousness systematically.

  15. Objects of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffman, Donald D; Prakash, Chetan

    2014-01-01

    Current models of visual perception typically assume that human vision estimates true properties of physical objects, properties that exist even if unperceived. However, recent studies of perceptual evolution, using evolutionary games and genetic algorithms, reveal that natural selection often drives true perceptions to extinction when they compete with perceptions tuned to fitness rather than truth: Perception guides adaptive behavior; it does not estimate a preexisting physical truth. Moreover, shifting from evolutionary biology to quantum physics, there is reason to disbelieve in preexisting physical truths: Certain interpretations of quantum theory deny that dynamical properties of physical objects have definite values when unobserved. In some of these interpretations the observer is fundamental, and wave functions are compendia of subjective probabilities, not preexisting elements of physical reality. These two considerations, from evolutionary biology and quantum physics, suggest that current models of object perception require fundamental reformulation. Here we begin such a reformulation, starting with a formal model of consciousness that we call a "conscious agent." We develop the dynamics of interacting conscious agents, and study how the perception of objects and space-time can emerge from such dynamics. We show that one particular object, the quantum free particle, has a wave function that is identical in form to the harmonic functions that characterize the asymptotic dynamics of conscious agents; particles are vibrations not of strings but of interacting conscious agents. This allows us to reinterpret physical properties such as position, momentum, and energy as properties of interacting conscious agents, rather than as preexisting physical truths. We sketch how this approach might extend to the perception of relativistic quantum objects, and to classical objects of macroscopic scale.

  16. [The "bright spot of consciousness"].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonov, P V

    1990-01-01

    I.P. Pavlov considered consciousness as an area of optimum excitability moving over the human cerebral cortex depending on the character of performed mental activity. Contemporary methods of computer analysis of electrical activity and brain thermal production have allowed to turn this metaphor into experimentally observed reality. It is shown that preservation of connections of cortical gnostic zones with verbal structures of the left hemisphere is the obligatory condition for consciousness functioning. These data reinforce the determination of consciousness as operation with knowledge, which by means of words, mathematic symbols and art images can be transmitted to other people. Communicative origin of consciousness creates possibility of mental dialogue with oneself, i.e. leads to the appearance of self-consciousness of the personality.

  17. Soft Electronics Enabled Ergonomic Human-Computer Interaction for Swallowing Training

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Yongkuk; Nicholls, Benjamin; Sup Lee, Dong; Chen, Yanfei; Chun, Youngjae; Siang Ang, Chee; Yeo, Woon-Hong

    2017-04-01

    We introduce a skin-friendly electronic system that enables human-computer interaction (HCI) for swallowing training in dysphagia rehabilitation. For an ergonomic HCI, we utilize a soft, highly compliant (“skin-like”) electrode, which addresses critical issues of an existing rigid and planar electrode combined with a problematic conductive electrolyte and adhesive pad. The skin-like electrode offers a highly conformal, user-comfortable interaction with the skin for long-term wearable, high-fidelity recording of swallowing electromyograms on the chin. Mechanics modeling and experimental quantification captures the ultra-elastic mechanical characteristics of an open mesh microstructured sensor, conjugated with an elastomeric membrane. Systematic in vivo studies investigate the functionality of the soft electronics for HCI-enabled swallowing training, which includes the application of a biofeedback system to detect swallowing behavior. The collection of results demonstrates clinical feasibility of the ergonomic electronics in HCI-driven rehabilitation for patients with swallowing disorders.

  18. Agential Self-consciousness : beyond conscious agency

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bos, G.H.

    2013-01-01

    Although we perform many of our actions without much consciousness of these, occasionally we are explicitly conscious that we are doing something for a reason. Such consciousness I call ‘agential self-consciousness’. Since ages we have understood such agential self-consciousness in terms of the

  19. Agential Self-consciousness : beyond conscious agency

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bos, G.H.

    2013-01-01

    Although we perform many of our actions without much consciousness of these, occasionally we are explicitly conscious that we are doing something for a reason. Such consciousness I call ‘agential self-consciousness’. Since ages we have understood such agential self-consciousness in terms of the self

  20. Proposing Some New Ecliptics in New Testament Studies Enabled by Digital Humanities-Based Methods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Libby

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available “Fragmentation” is a well-worn watchword in contemporary biblical studies. But is endless fragmentation across the traditional domains of epistemology, methodology and hermeneutics the inevitable future for the postmodern exercise of biblical scholarship? In our view, multiple factors mitigate against such a future, but two command our attention here. First, digital humanities itself, through its principled use of corpora, databases and computer-based methods, seems to be remarkably capable of producing findings with high levels of face validity (interpretive agreement across multiple hermeneutical perspectives and communities. Second, and perhaps more subversively, there is a substantial body of practitioners that, per Kearney, actively question postmodernity’s impress as the final port of call for philosophy. For these practitioners deconstruction has become both indispensable — by delegitimizing hegemonies — but, in its own way, metanarratival by stultifying all other iterative, dialectical and critical processes that have historically motivated scholarship. Sensing this impasse, Kearney (1987, pp. 43-45 proposes a reimagining that is not only critical but that also embraces ποίησις, the possibility of optimistic, creative work. Such a stance within digital humanities would affirm that poietic events emerge not only through frictions and fragmentation (e.g. Kinder and McPherson 2014, pp. xiii-xviii but also through commonalties and convergence. Our approach here will be to demonstrate such a reimagining, rather than to argue for it, using two worked examples in the Greek New Testament (GNT. Those examples – digital humanities-enabled papyrology and digital humanities-enabled statistical linguistics – demonstrate ways in which the data of the text itself can be used to interrogate our perspectives and suggest that our perspectives must remain ever open to such inquiries. We conclude with a call for digital humanities to

  1. Energy consumption and human factors. Residents` style of living and consciousness of the residential houses; Energy shohi to human factor. Jutaku ni okeru kyojusha no ishiki sumaikata

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Matsubara, N. [Kyoto Prefectural Univ., Kyoto (Japan). Faculty of Living Science

    1996-09-05

    Energy consumption and human factors, which mean residents` style of living and consciousness of the residential houses, are considered on the basis of the survey results for residents living in residential houses with the same specifications in the Kansai district in 1994. The outside climate condition is loosened through the shelter performance of building, solar radiation, and clothes, to form the climate under clothes. Additionally, as a result of physiological control of body heat, the warm, cool, and comfortable sensations are formed. Various factors affect this process. Conception of satisfaction was considered as upper criteria. There are residents satisfying the non-use of air-conditioner, even though it is not comfortable. The concept of satisfaction determines dissatisfaction, patience, and otherwise satisfaction of environment modification action and escape action from environment. Concrete examples of the life style are illustrated based on the survey. Dispersion of room temperature and the various consciousness and styles of living are also illustrated, qualitatively, on the basis of the field survey. For the investigation of domestic energy consumption items, it is not avoidable to illustrate the common actual conditions of living. 12 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab.

  2. Scaling-Laws of Human Broadcast Communication Enable Distinction between Human, Corporate and Robot Twitter Users

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tavares, Gabriela; Faisal, Aldo

    2013-01-01

    Human behaviour is highly individual by nature, yet statistical structures are emerging which seem to govern the actions of human beings collectively. Here we search for universal statistical laws dictating the timing of human actions in communication decisions. We focus on the distribution of the time interval between messages in human broadcast communication, as documented in Twitter, and study a collection of over 160,000 tweets for three user categories: personal (controlled by one person), managed (typically PR agency controlled) and bot-controlled (automated system). To test our hypothesis, we investigate whether it is possible to differentiate between user types based on tweet timing behaviour, independently of the content in messages. For this purpose, we developed a system to process a large amount of tweets for reality mining and implemented two simple probabilistic inference algorithms: 1. a naive Bayes classifier, which distinguishes between two and three account categories with classification performance of 84.6% and 75.8%, respectively and 2. a prediction algorithm to estimate the time of a user's next tweet with an . Our results show that we can reliably distinguish between the three user categories as well as predict the distribution of a user's inter-message time with reasonable accuracy. More importantly, we identify a characteristic power-law decrease in the tail of inter-message time distribution by human users which is different from that obtained for managed and automated accounts. This result is evidence of a universal law that permeates the timing of human decisions in broadcast communication and extends the findings of several previous studies of peer-to-peer communication. PMID:23843945

  3. Scaling-laws of human broadcast communication enable distinction between human, corporate and robot Twitter users.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriela Tavares

    Full Text Available Human behaviour is highly individual by nature, yet statistical structures are emerging which seem to govern the actions of human beings collectively. Here we search for universal statistical laws dictating the timing of human actions in communication decisions. We focus on the distribution of the time interval between messages in human broadcast communication, as documented in Twitter, and study a collection of over 160,000 tweets for three user categories: personal (controlled by one person, managed (typically PR agency controlled and bot-controlled (automated system. To test our hypothesis, we investigate whether it is possible to differentiate between user types based on tweet timing behaviour, independently of the content in messages. For this purpose, we developed a system to process a large amount of tweets for reality mining and implemented two simple probabilistic inference algorithms: 1. a naive Bayes classifier, which distinguishes between two and three account categories with classification performance of 84.6% and 75.8%, respectively and 2. a prediction algorithm to estimate the time of a user's next tweet with an R(2 ≈ 0.7. Our results show that we can reliably distinguish between the three user categories as well as predict the distribution of a user's inter-message time with reasonable accuracy. More importantly, we identify a characteristic power-law decrease in the tail of inter-message time distribution by human users which is different from that obtained for managed and automated accounts. This result is evidence of a universal law that permeates the timing of human decisions in broadcast communication and extends the findings of several previous studies of peer-to-peer communication.

  4. Scaling-laws of human broadcast communication enable distinction between human, corporate and robot Twitter users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tavares, Gabriela; Faisal, Aldo

    2013-01-01

    Human behaviour is highly individual by nature, yet statistical structures are emerging which seem to govern the actions of human beings collectively. Here we search for universal statistical laws dictating the timing of human actions in communication decisions. We focus on the distribution of the time interval between messages in human broadcast communication, as documented in Twitter, and study a collection of over 160,000 tweets for three user categories: personal (controlled by one person), managed (typically PR agency controlled) and bot-controlled (automated system). To test our hypothesis, we investigate whether it is possible to differentiate between user types based on tweet timing behaviour, independently of the content in messages. For this purpose, we developed a system to process a large amount of tweets for reality mining and implemented two simple probabilistic inference algorithms: 1. a naive Bayes classifier, which distinguishes between two and three account categories with classification performance of 84.6% and 75.8%, respectively and 2. a prediction algorithm to estimate the time of a user's next tweet with an R(2) ≈ 0.7. Our results show that we can reliably distinguish between the three user categories as well as predict the distribution of a user's inter-message time with reasonable accuracy. More importantly, we identify a characteristic power-law decrease in the tail of inter-message time distribution by human users which is different from that obtained for managed and automated accounts. This result is evidence of a universal law that permeates the timing of human decisions in broadcast communication and extends the findings of several previous studies of peer-to-peer communication.

  5. Comparative oncogenomic analysis of copy number alterations in human and zebrafish tumors enables cancer driver discovery.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    GuangJun Zhang

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The identification of cancer drivers is a major goal of current cancer research. Finding driver genes within large chromosomal events is especially challenging because such alterations encompass many genes. Previously, we demonstrated that zebrafish malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNSTs are highly aneuploid, much like human tumors. In this study, we examined 147 zebrafish MPNSTs by massively parallel sequencing and identified both large and focal copy number alterations (CNAs. Given the low degree of conserved synteny between fish and mammals, we reasoned that comparative analyses of CNAs from fish versus human MPNSTs would enable elimination of a large proportion of passenger mutations, especially on large CNAs. We established a list of orthologous genes between human and zebrafish, which includes approximately two-thirds of human protein-coding genes. For the subset of these genes found in human MPNST CNAs, only one quarter of their orthologues were co-gained or co-lost in zebrafish, dramatically narrowing the list of candidate cancer drivers for both focal and large CNAs. We conclude that zebrafish-human comparative analysis represents a powerful, and broadly applicable, tool to enrich for evolutionarily conserved cancer drivers.

  6. From the Philosophy of Consciousness to the Philosophy of Difference: The Subject for Education after Humanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Guoping

    2015-01-01

    Biesta has suggested that education after humanism should be interested in existence, not essence, in what the subject can do, not in what the subject is--the truth about the subject--and this is the way inspired by Foucault and Levinas. In this article, I analyze Foucault's alleged deconstruction and reconfiguration of the subject and Levinas'…

  7. From the Philosophy of Consciousness to the Philosophy of Difference: The Subject for Education after Humanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Guoping

    2015-01-01

    Biesta has suggested that education after humanism should be interested in existence, not essence, in what the subject can do, not in what the subject is--the truth about the subject--and this is the way inspired by Foucault and Levinas. In this article, I analyze Foucault's alleged deconstruction and reconfiguration of the subject and Levinas'…

  8. From the Perspective of Artificial Intelligence: A New Approach to the Nature of Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riccardo Manzotti

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Consciousness is not only a philosophical but also a technological issue, since a conscious agent has evolutionary advantages. Thus, to replicate a biological level of intelligence in a machine, concepts of machine consciousness have to be considered. The widespread internalistic assumption that humans do not experience the world as it is, but through an internal ‘3D virtual reality model’, hinders this construction. To overcome this obstacle for machine consciousness a new theoretical approach to consciousness is sketched between internalism and externalism to address the gap between experience and physical world. The ‘internal interpreter concept’ is replaced by a ‘key-lock approach’. Here, consciousness is not an image of the external world but the world itself. A possible technological design for a conscious machine is drafted taking advantage of an architecture exploiting selfdevelopment of new goals, intrinsic motivation, and situated cognition. The proposed cognitive architecture does not pretend to be conclusive or experimentally satisfying but rather forms the theoretical the first step to a full architecture model on which the authors currently work on, which will enable conscious agents e.g. for robotics or software applications.

  9. Perceptual and conceptual content of human consciousness--a perspective of the philosophy of mind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janović, T; Pećnjak, D

    2001-12-01

    The relation of the perceptual and the conceptual aspect of human mental states and process is discussed in light of some recent discussions. Several philosophical arguments for and against the conclusion that perceptual content is a non-conceptual type of representation are presented and critically assessed. The possibility of an objective criterion for resolving the issue, independent of introspective reports and intuitive conjectures, is considered.

  10. George Herbert Mead on consciousness: antidote to Cartesian absurdities?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Willert, Søren

    The article explicates George Herbert Mead's theory of consciousness as presented in Mind, Self and Society. According to Mead, the term consciousness may refer to three different sets of phenomena: (1) the environment as implied by our goal-directed action; Mead names this consciousness aspect...... experience; it is shared by humans and subhuman animals alike; (2) consciousness of environmental experience; Mead names this consciousness aspect awareness; it is exclusively human; (3) the peculiar sensed qualities attaching to consciousness, equalling what is today named qualia. Descartes......-inspired psychology makes the third consciousness aspect all-important. Within Mead's framework for a darwinistically inspired psycholgy, it becomes theoretically insignificant....

  11. Potential Factors Enabling Human Body Colonization by Animal Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis Strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciszewski, Marcin; Szewczyk, Eligia M

    2017-05-01

    Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis (SDSE) is a pyogenic, Lancefield C or G streptococcal pathogen. Until recently, it has been considered as an exclusive animal pathogen. Nowadays, it is responsible for both animal infections in wild animals, pets, and livestock and human infections often clinically similar to the ones caused by group A streptococcus (Streptococcus pyogenes). The risk of zoonotic infection is the most significant in people having regular contact with animals, such as veterinarians, cattlemen, and farmers. SDSE is also prevalent on skin of healthy dogs, cats, and horses, which pose a risk also to people having contact with companion animals. The main aim of this study was to evaluate if there are features differentiating animal and human SDSE isolates, especially in virulence factors involved in the first stages of pathogenesis (adhesion and colonization). Equal groups of human and animal SDSE clinical strains were obtained from superficial infections (skin, wounds, abscesses). The presence of five virulence genes (prtF1, prtF2, lmb, cbp, emm type) was evaluated, as well as ability to form bacterial biofilm and produce BLIS (bacteriocin-like inhibitory substances) which are active against human skin microbiota. The study showed that the presence of genes coding for fibronectin-binding protein and M protein, as well as BLIS activity inhibiting the growth of Corynebacterium spp. strains might constitute the virulence factors which are necessary to colonize human organism, whereas they are not crucial in animal infections. Those virulence factors might be horizontally transferred from human streptococci to animal SDSE strains, enabling their ability to colonize human organism.

  12. Self-organized dynamical complexity in human wakefulness and sleep: Different critical brain-activity feedback for conscious and unconscious states

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allegrini, Paolo; Paradisi, Paolo; Menicucci, Danilo; Laurino, Marco; Piarulli, Andrea; Gemignani, Angelo

    2015-09-01

    Criticality reportedly describes brain dynamics. The main critical feature is the presence of scale-free neural avalanches, whose auto-organization is determined by a critical branching ratio of neural-excitation spreading. Other features, directly associated to second-order phase transitions, are: (i) scale-free-network topology of functional connectivity, stemming from suprathreshold pairwise correlations, superimposable, in waking brain activity, with that of ferromagnets at Curie temperature; (ii) temporal long-range memory associated to renewal intermittency driven by abrupt fluctuations in the order parameters, detectable in human brain via spatially distributed phase or amplitude changes in EEG activity. Herein we study intermittent events, extracted from 29 night EEG recordings, including presleep wakefulness and all phases of sleep, where different levels of mentation and consciousness are present. We show that while critical avalanching is unchanged, at least qualitatively, intermittency and functional connectivity, present during conscious phases (wakefulness and REM sleep), break down during both shallow and deep non-REM sleep. We provide a theory for fragmentation-induced intermittency breakdown and suggest that the main difference between conscious and unconscious states resides in the backwards causation, namely on the constraints that the emerging properties at large scale induce to the lower scales. In particular, while in conscious states this backwards causation induces a critical slowing down, preserving spatiotemporal correlations, in dreamless sleep we see a self-organized maintenance of moduli working in parallel. Critical avalanches are still present, and establish transient auto-organization, whose enhanced fluctuations are able to trigger sleep-protecting mechanisms that reinstate parallel activity. The plausible role of critical avalanches in dreamless sleep is to provide a rapid recovery of consciousness, if stimuli are highly arousing.

  13. Intrachromosomal recombination between highly diverged DNA sequences is enabled in human cells deficient in Bloom helicase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yibin; Li, Shen; Smith, Krissy; Waldman, Barbara Criscuolo; Waldman, Alan S

    2016-05-01

    Mutation of Bloom helicase (BLM) causes Bloom syndrome (BS), a rare human genetic disorder associated with genome instability, elevation of sister chromatid exchanges, and predisposition to cancer. Deficiency in BLM homologs in Drosophila and yeast brings about significantly increased rates of recombination between imperfectly matched sequences ("homeologous recombination," or HeR). To assess whether BLM deficiency provokes an increase in HeR in human cells, we transfected an HeR substrate into a BLM-null cell line derived from a BS patient. The substrate contained a thymidine kinase (tk)-neo fusion gene disrupted by the recognition site for endonuclease I-SceI, as well as a functional tk gene to serve as a potential recombination partner for the tk-neo gene. The two tk sequences on the substrate displayed 19% divergence. A double-strand break was introduced by expression of I-SceI and repair events were recovered by selection for G418-resistant clones. Among 181 events recovered, 30 were accomplished via HeR with the balance accomplished by nonhomologous end-joining. The frequency of HeR events in the BS cells was elevated significantly compared to that seen in normal human fibroblasts or in BS cells complemented for BLM expression. We conclude that BLM deficiency enables HeR in human cells.

  14. Is there science behind the near-death experience: Does human consciousness survives after death?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya

    2013-01-01

    hallucinogenic transmitters (and endorphins of the brain themselves play a role in the NDE has been postulated. Nevertheless, there are NDE-elements, such as the frequently reported quick life-reviews, and the acquisition of external, verifiable information about the physical surroundings, that cannot be explained. Wish-fulfillment, death-denial or fighting against death, and other defense mechanisms of the brain, are also not adequate explanations. The large body of NDE data now points to genuine evidence for a non-physical reality. The paranormal capacities of the human being also raises the question: Does the human soul exist?

  15. HPD: an online integrated human pathway database enabling systems biology studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowbina, Sudhir R; Wu, Xiaogang; Zhang, Fan; Li, Peter M; Pandey, Ragini; Kasamsetty, Harini N; Chen, Jake Y

    2009-10-08

    Pathway-oriented experimental and computational studies have led to a significant accumulation of biological knowledge concerning three major types of biological pathway events: molecular signaling events, gene regulation events, and metabolic reaction events. A pathway consists of a series of molecular pathway events that link molecular entities such as proteins, genes, and metabolites. There are approximately 300 biological pathway resources as of April 2009 according to the Pathguide database; however, these pathway databases generally have poor coverage or poor quality, and are difficult to integrate, due to syntactic-level and semantic-level data incompatibilities. We developed the Human Pathway Database (HPD) by integrating heterogeneous human pathway data that are either curated at the NCI Pathway Interaction Database (PID), Reactome, BioCarta, KEGG or indexed from the Protein Lounge Web sites. Integration of pathway data at syntactic, semantic, and schematic levels was based on a unified pathway data model and data warehousing-based integration techniques. HPD provides a comprehensive online view that connects human proteins, genes, RNA transcripts, enzymes, signaling events, metabolic reaction events, and gene regulatory events. At the time of this writing HPD includes 999 human pathways and more than 59,341 human molecular entities. The HPD software provides both a user-friendly Web interface for online use and a robust relational database backend for advanced pathway querying. This pathway tool enables users to 1) search for human pathways from different resources by simply entering genes/proteins involved in pathways or words appearing in pathway names, 2) analyze pathway-protein association, 3) study pathway-pathway similarity, and 4) build integrated pathway networks. We demonstrated the usage and characteristics of the new HPD through three breast cancer case studies. HPD http://bio.informatics.iupui.edu/HPD is a new resource for searching, managing

  16. Synthetic biology meets bioprinting: enabling technologies for humans on Mars (and Earth)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.

    2016-01-01

    Human exploration off planet is severely limited by the cost of launching materials into space and by re-supply. Thus materials brought from Earth must be light, stable and reliable at destination. Using traditional approaches, a lunar or Mars base would require either transporting a hefty store of metals or heavy manufacturing equipment and construction materials for in situ extraction; both would severely limit any other mission objectives. Long-term human space presence requires periodic replenishment, adding a massive cost overhead. Even robotic missions often sacrifice science goals for heavy radiation and thermal protection. Biology has the potential to solve these problems because life can replicate and repair itself, and perform a wide variety of chemical reactions including making food, fuel and materials. Synthetic biology enhances and expands life's evolved repertoire. Using organisms as feedstock, additive manufacturing through bioprinting will make possible the dream of producing bespoke tools, food, smart fabrics and even replacement organs on demand. This new approach and the resulting novel products will enable human exploration and settlement on Mars, while providing new manufacturing approaches for life on Earth. PMID:27528764

  17. Synthetic biology meets bioprinting: enabling technologies for humans on Mars (and Earth).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J

    2016-08-15

    Human exploration off planet is severely limited by the cost of launching materials into space and by re-supply. Thus materials brought from Earth must be light, stable and reliable at destination. Using traditional approaches, a lunar or Mars base would require either transporting a hefty store of metals or heavy manufacturing equipment and construction materials for in situ extraction; both would severely limit any other mission objectives. Long-term human space presence requires periodic replenishment, adding a massive cost overhead. Even robotic missions often sacrifice science goals for heavy radiation and thermal protection. Biology has the potential to solve these problems because life can replicate and repair itself, and perform a wide variety of chemical reactions including making food, fuel and materials. Synthetic biology enhances and expands life's evolved repertoire. Using organisms as feedstock, additive manufacturing through bioprinting will make possible the dream of producing bespoke tools, food, smart fabrics and even replacement organs on demand. This new approach and the resulting novel products will enable human exploration and settlement on Mars, while providing new manufacturing approaches for life on Earth.

  18. Multiple Hydrogen Bonding Enables the Self-Healing of Sensors for Human-Machine Interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Jie; Lu, Canhui; Zhuang, Jian; Liu, Manxiao; Zhang, Xinxing; Yu, Yanmei; Tao, Qingchuan

    2017-07-17

    Despite its widespread use in signal collection, flexible sensors have been rarely used in human-machine interactions owing to its indistinguishable signal, poor reliability, and poor stability when inflicted with unavoidable scratches and/or mechanical cuts. A highly sensitive and self-healing sensor enabled by multiple hydrogen bonding network and nanostructured conductive network is demonstrated. The nanostructured supramolecular sensor displays extremely fast (ca. 15 s) and repeatable self-healing ability with high healing efficiency (93 % after the third healing process). It can precisely detect tiny human motions, demonstrating highly distinguishable and reliable signals even after cutting-healing and bending over 20 000 cycles. Furthermore, a human-machine interaction system is integrated to develop a facial expression control system and an electronic larynx, aiming to control the robot to assist the patient's daily life and help the mute to realize real-time speaking. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  19. Molecular concentration of deoxyHb in human prefrontal cortex predicts the emergence and suppression of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leon-Dominguez, Umberto; Izzetoglu, Meltem; Leon-Carrion, Jose; Solís-Marcos, Ignacio; Garcia-Torrado, Francisco Jose; Forastero-Rodríguez, Ana; Mellado-Miras, Patricia; Villegas-Duque, Diego; Lopez-Romero, Juan Luis; Onaral, Banu; Izzetoglu, Kurtulus

    2014-01-15

    This is the first study to use fNIRS to explore anaesthetic depth and awakening during surgery with general anaesthesia. A 16 channel continuous wave (CW) functional near-infrared system (fNIRS) was used to monitor PFC activity. These outcomes were compared to BIS measures. The results indicate that deoxyHb concentration in the PFC varies during the suppression and emergence of consciousness. During suppression, deoxyHb levels increase, signalling the deactivation of the PFC, while during emergence, deoxyHb concentration drops, initiating PFC activation and the recovery of consciousness. Furthermore, BIS and deoxyHb concentrations in the PFC display a high negative correlation throughout the different anaesthetic phases. These findings suggest that deoxyHb could be a reliable marker for monitoring anaesthetic depth, and that the PFC intervenes in the suppression and emergence of consciousness. © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Four-Dimensional Graded Consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonkisz, Jakub; Wierzchoń, Michał; Binder, Marek

    2017-01-01

    Both the multidimensional phenomenon and the polysemous notion of consciousness continue to prove resistant to consistent measurement and unambiguous definition. This is hardly surprising, given that there is no agreement even as regards the most fundamental issues they involve. One of the basic disagreements present in the continuing debate about consciousness pertains to its gradational nature. The general aim of this article is to show how consciousness might be graded and multidimensional at the same time. We therefore focus on the question of what it is, exactly, that is or could be graded in cases of consciousness, and how we can measure it. Ultimately, four different gradable aspects of consciousness will be described: quality, abstractness, complexity and usefulness, which belong to four different dimensions, these being understood, respectively, as phenomenal, semantic, physiological, and functional. Consequently, consciousness may be said to vary with respect to phenomenal quality, semantic abstraction, physiological complexity, and functional usefulness. It is hoped that such a four-dimensional approach will help to clarify and justify claims about the hierarchical nature of consciousness. The approach also proves explanatorily advantageous, as it enables us not only to draw attention to certain new and important differences in respect of subjective measures of awareness and to justify how a given creature may be ranked higher in one dimension of consciousness and lower in terms of another, but also allows for innovative explanations of a variety of well-known phenomena (amongst these, the interpretations of blindsight and locked-in syndrome will be briefly outlined here). Moreover, a 4D framework makes possible many predictions and hypotheses that may be experimentally tested (We point out a few such possibilities pertaining to interdimensional dependencies).

  1. Consciousness -- A Verifiable Prediction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panchapakesan, N.

    2014-07-01

    Consciousness may or may not be completely within the realm of science. We have argued elsewhere that there is a high probability that it is not within the purview of science, just like humanities and arts are outside science. Even social sciences do not come under science when human interactions are involved. Here, we suggest a possible experiment to decide whether it is part of science. We suggest that a scientific signal may be available to investigate the prediction in the form of an electromagnetic brainwave background radiation.

  2. An Essay on Consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Wise B.

    1981-01-01

    Reviews the role of consciousness within the discipline of psychology (including psychology research and textbooks). Presents information on the nature of consciousness, problems with consciousness, the mind/ matter controversy, and the state of the art of consciousness within psychology today. Concludes that there is a shift in psychology toward…

  3. Evolvable Mars Campaign Long Duration Habitation Strategies: Architectural Approaches to Enable Human Exploration Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Matthew A.; Toups, Larry; Howe, A. Scott; Wald, Samuel I.

    2015-01-01

    The Evolvable Mars Campaign (EMC) is the current NASA Mars mission planning effort which seeks to establish sustainable, realistic strategies to enable crewed Mars missions in the mid-2030s timeframe. The primary outcome of the Evolvable Mars Campaign is not to produce "The Plan" for sending humans to Mars, but instead its intent is to inform the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate near-term key decisions and investment priorities to prepare for those types of missions. The FY'15 EMC effort focused upon analysis of integrated mission architectures to identify technically appealing transportation strategies, logistics build-up strategies, and vehicle designs for reaching and exploring Mars moons and Mars surface. As part of the development of this campaign, long duration habitats are required which are capable of supporting crew with limited resupply and crew abort during the Mars transit, Mars moons, and Mars surface segments of EMC missions. In particular, the EMC design team sought to design a single, affordable habitation system whose manufactured units could be outfitted uniquely for each of these missions and reused for multiple crewed missions. This habitat system must provide all of the functionality to safely support 4 crew for long durations while meeting mass and volume constraints for each of the mission segments set by the chosen transportation architecture and propulsion technologies. This paper describes several proposed long-duration habitation strategies to enable the Evolvable Mars Campaign through improvements in mass, cost, and reusability, and presents results of analysis to compare the options and identify promising solutions. The concepts investigated include several monolithic concepts: monolithic clean sheet designs, and concepts which leverage the co-manifested payload capability of NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) to deliver habitable elements within the Universal Payload Adaptor between the SLS upper stage and the Orion

  4. Bayesian Network Inference Enables Unbiased Phenotypic Anchoring of Transcriptomic Responses to Cigarette Smoke in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennen, Danyel G J; van Leeuwen, Danitsja M; Hendrickx, Diana M; Gottschalk, Ralph W H; van Delft, Joost H M; Kleinjans, Jos C S

    2015-10-19

    Microarray-based transcriptomic analysis has been demonstrated to hold the opportunity to study the effects of human exposure to, e.g., chemical carcinogens at the whole genome level, thus yielding broad-ranging molecular information on possible carcinogenic effects. Since genes do not operate individually but rather through concerted interactions, analyzing and visualizing networks of genes should provide important mechanistic information, especially upon connecting them to functional parameters, such as those derived from measurements of biomarkers for exposure and carcinogenic risk. Conventional methods such as hierarchical clustering and correlation analyses are frequently used to address these complex interactions but are limited as they do not provide directional causal dependence relationships. Therefore, our aim was to apply Bayesian network inference with the purpose of phenotypic anchoring of modified gene expressions. We investigated a use case on transcriptomic responses to cigarette smoking in humans, in association with plasma cotinine levels as biomarkers of exposure and aromatic DNA-adducts in blood cells as biomarkers of carcinogenic risk. Many of the genes that appear in the Bayesian networks surrounding plasma cotinine, and to a lesser extent around aromatic DNA-adducts, hold biologically relevant functions in inducing severe adverse effects of smoking. In conclusion, this study shows that Bayesian network inference enables unbiased phenotypic anchoring of transcriptomics responses. Furthermore, in all inferred Bayesian networks several dependencies are found which point to known but also to new relationships between the expression of specific genes, cigarette smoke exposure, DNA damaging-effects, and smoking-related diseases, in particular associated with apoptosis, DNA repair, and tumor suppression, as well as with autoimmunity.

  5. Study of Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel Lee

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The human brain is a powerful organ that controls most of the body. Researchers around the world have long tried to uncover how the brain operates, how memories are formed and stored. Our understanding of neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease has been rapidly improving, yet much remains to be done. In this work, we attempt to study changes in intracranial pressure (ICP for a 12-hour period and discuss whether the resulting estimates could be used as a measure of consciousness.

  6. Science of consciousness and the hard problem

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stapp, H.P.

    1996-05-22

    Quantum theory is essentially a rationally coherent theory of the interaction of mind and matter, and it allows our conscious thoughts to play a causally efficacious and necessary role in brain dynamics. It therefore provides a natural basis, created by scientists, for the science of consciousness. As an illustration it is explained how the interaction of brain and consciousness can speed up brain processing, and thereby enhance the survival prospects of conscious organisms, as compared to similar organisms that lack consciousness. As a second illustration it is explained how, within the quantum framework, the consciously experienced {open_quotes}I{close_quotes} directs the actions of a human being. It is concluded that contemporary science already has an adequate framework for incorporating causally efficacious experimential events into the physical universe in a manner that: (1) puts the neural correlates of consciousness into the theory in a well defined way, (2) explains in principle how the effects of consciousness, per se, can enhance the survival prospects of organisms that possess it, (3) allows this survival effect to feed into phylogenetic development, and (4) explains how the consciously experienced {open_quotes}I{close_quotes} can direct human behaviour.

  7. A common neural code for similar conscious experiences in different individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naci, Lorina; Cusack, Rhodri; Anello, Mimma; Owen, Adrian M

    2014-09-30

    The interpretation of human consciousness from brain activity, without recourse to speech or action, is one of the most provoking and challenging frontiers of modern neuroscience. We asked whether there is a common neural code that underpins similar conscious experiences, which could be used to decode these experiences in the absence of behavior. To this end, we used richly evocative stimulation (an engaging movie) portraying real-world events to elicit a similar conscious experience in different people. Common neural correlates of conscious experience were quantified and related to measurable, quantitative and qualitative, executive components of the movie through two additional behavioral investigations. The movie's executive demands drove synchronized brain activity across healthy participants' frontal and parietal cortices in regions known to support executive function. Moreover, the timing of activity in these regions was predicted by participants' highly similar qualitative experience of the movie's moment-to-moment executive demands, suggesting that synchronization of activity across participants underpinned their similar experience. Thus we demonstrate, for the first time to our knowledge, that a neural index based on executive function reliably predicted every healthy individual's similar conscious experience in response to real-world events unfolding over time. This approach provided strong evidence for the conscious experience of a brain-injured patient, who had remained entirely behaviorally nonresponsive for 16 y. The patient's executive engagement and moment-to-moment perception of the movie content were highly similar to that of every healthy participant. These findings shed light on the common basis of human consciousness and enable the interpretation of conscious experience in the absence of behavior.

  8. Supporting Negotiation Behavior with Haptics-Enabled Human-Computer Interfaces

    OpenAIRE

    Küçükyılmaz, Ayşe; Sezgin, Tevfik Metin; Başdoğan, Çağatay

    2012-01-01

    An active research goal for human-computer interaction is to allow humans to communicate with computers in an intuitive and natural fashion, especially in real-life interaction scenarios. One approach that has been advocated to achieve this has been to build computer systems with human-like qualities and capabilities. In this paper, we present insight on how human-computer interaction can be enriched by employing the computers with behavioral patterns that naturally appear in human-human nego...

  9. Micropatterned, clickable culture substrates enable in situ spatiotemporal control of human PSC-derived neural tissue morphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knight, G T; Sha, J; Ashton, R S

    2015-03-28

    We describe a modular culture platform that enables spatiotemporal control of the morphology of 2D neural tissues derived from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) by simply adding clickable peptides to the media. It should be widely applicable for elucidating how spatiotemporal changes in morphology and substrate biochemistry regulate tissue morphogenesis.

  10. The Quasi-Human Child: How Normative Conceptions of Childhood Enabled Neoliberal School Reform in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonu, Debbie; Benson, Jeremy

    2016-01-01

    This paper argues that normative conceptions of the child, as a natural quasi-human being in need of guidance, enable current school reforms in the United States to directly link the child to neoliberal aims and objectives. In using Foucault's concept of governmentality and disciplinary power, we first present how the child is constructed as a…

  11. Neural correlates of consciousness

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    consciousness depends on the formation of complex arrangements which ... as well as the involvement of memory in consciousness. 40 Hz synchronized .... the cortex, thalamus, hippocampus and amygdala.1 Spiking activity in cholinergic ...

  12. Attention and Olfactory Consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    Andreas eKeller

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the relation between attention and consciousness is an important part of our understanding of consciousness. Attention, unlike consciousness, can be systematically manipulated in psychophysical experiments and a law-like relation between attention and consciousness is waiting to be discovered. Most attempts to discover the nature of this relation are focused on a special type of attention: spatial visual attention. In this review I want to introduce another type of attention to ...

  13. Declarative Consciousness for Reconstruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seymour, Leslie G.

    2013-12-01

    Existing information technology tools are harnessed and integrated to provide digital specification of human consciousness of individual persons. An incremental compilation technology is proposed as a transformation of LifeLog derived persona specifications into a Canonical representation of the neocortex architecture of the human brain. The primary purpose is to gain an understanding of the semantical allocation of the neocortex capacity. Novel neocortex content allocation simulators with browsers are proposed to experiment with various approaches of relieving the brain from overload conditions. An IT model of the neocortex is maintained, which is then updated each time new stimuli are received from the LifeLog data stream; new information is gained from brain signal measurements; and new functional dependencies are discovered between live persona consumed/produced signals

  14. Consciousness and neural plasticity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    changes or to abandon the strong identity thesis altogether. Were one to pursue a theory according to which consciousness is not an epiphenomenon to brain processes, consciousness may in fact affect its own neural basis. The neural correlate of consciousness is often seen as a stable structure, that is...

  15. Visual masking and the dynamics of human perception, cognition, and consciousness A century of progress, a contemporary synthesis, and future directions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ansorge, Ulrich; Francis, Gregory; Herzog, Michael H; Oğmen, Haluk

    2008-07-15

    The 1990s, the "decade of the brain," witnessed major advances in the study of visual perception, cognition, and consciousness. Impressive techniques in neurophysiology, neuroanatomy, neuropsychology, electrophysiology, psychophysics and brain-imaging were developed to address how the nervous system transforms and represents visual inputs. Many of these advances have dealt with the steady-state properties of processing. To complement this "steady-state approach," more recent research emphasized the importance of dynamic aspects of visual processing. Visual masking has been a paradigm of choice for more than a century when it comes to the study of dynamic vision. A recent workshop (http://lpsy.epfl.ch/VMworkshop/), held in Delmenhorst, Germany, brought together an international group of researchers to present state-of-the-art research on dynamic visual processing with a focus on visual masking. This special issue presents peer-reviewed contributions by the workshop participants and provides a contemporary synthesis of how visual masking can inform the dynamics of human perception, cognition, and consciousness.

  16. Epic Consciousness: A Pertinent New Unification of an Important Concept

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vernon M Neppe

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available “Consciousness” has traditionally been the most difficult term to describe because it’s conceptualized variably and incompletely between, and even within different specialties. In this theoretical paper, we propose for the first time a detailed new “EPIC Consciousness” classification integrating four is overlapping EPIC “prongs”: Existential, Paradigmatic, Information-meaning and Cybernetic. Each necessarily comes with new terms. E: Existential “distinctions” of Consciousness are further subdivided into “extent, content and impact distinctions” a. Consciousness extent substrate: measurable ordinal Consciousness dimensions are tethered to measurable Space and Time dimensions. b. Consciousness content matrix: This Consciousness container is comparable with mass- energy containers. c. Consciousness impact: Consciousness impacts and influences the “extent” and “content”. P: Paradigmatic levels of Consciousness: Consciousness involves a four-level gradation I. Qualit Consciousness: the most basic consciousness (Qualit level always exists in everything inanimate or animate as everything contains the most fundamental discrete finite physical meaning. Qualits are quanta plus meaning. II. Neurobiological/ Neurological Consciousness: the endpoint nervous system expression of all living (animate beings. They have awareness and responsiveness. III. Psychological Consciousness: involving humans and animals. The psychological is disputably partly separated from the neurological. IV. Higher Consciousness disputably outside the brain: This might involve dreams, meditation, creative, transcendent, psi and altered states, plus mystical traits. V. These four levels are all applicable to living humans. Information converted to meaning: Infinitely large repositories of general information are expressed as direct targeted, specific meaningful information. Cybernetic consciousness communications: This provides a mechanistic input, central

  17. Acute loss of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tristán, Bekinschtein; Gleichgerrcht, Ezequiel; Manes, Facundo

    2015-01-01

    Acute loss of consciousness poses a fascinating scenario for theoretical and clinical research. This chapter introduces a simple yet powerful framework to investigate altered states of consciousness. We then explore the different disorders of consciousness that result from acute brain injury, and techniques used in the acute phase to predict clinical outcome in different patient populations in light of models of acute loss of consciousness. We further delve into post-traumatic amnesia as a model for predicting cognitive sequels following acute loss of consciousness. We approach the study of acute loss of consciousness from a theoretical and clinical perspective to conclude that clinicians in acute care centers must incorporate new measurements and techniques besides the classic coma scales in order to assess their patients with loss of consciousness.

  18. Supporting Negotiation Behavior with Haptics-Enabled Human-Computer Interfaces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oguz, S O; Kucukyilmaz, A; Sezgin, Tevfik Metin; Basdogan, C

    2012-01-01

    An active research goal for human-computer interaction is to allow humans to communicate with computers in an intuitive and natural fashion, especially in real-life interaction scenarios. One approach that has been advocated to achieve this has been to build computer systems with human-like qualities and capabilities. In this paper, we present insight on how human-computer interaction can be enriched by employing the computers with behavioral patterns that naturally appear in human-human negotiation scenarios. For this purpose, we introduce a two-party negotiation game specifically built for studying the effectiveness of haptic and audio-visual cues in conveying negotiation related behaviors. The game is centered around a real-time continuous two-party negotiation scenario based on the existing game-theory and negotiation literature. During the game, humans are confronted with a computer opponent, which can display different behaviors, such as concession, competition, and negotiation. Through a user study, we show that the behaviors that are associated with human negotiation can be incorporated into human-computer interaction, and the addition of haptic cues provides a statistically significant increase in the human-recognition accuracy of machine-displayed behaviors. In addition to aspects of conveying these negotiation-related behaviors, we also focus on and report game-theoretical aspects of the overall interaction experience. In particular, we show that, as reported in the game-theory literature, certain negotiation strategies such as tit-for-tat may generate maximum combined utility for the negotiating parties, providing an excellent balance between the energy spent by the user and the combined utility of the negotiating parties.

  19. Consciousness, biology and quantum hypotheses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baars, Bernard J.; Edelman, David B.

    2012-09-01

    Natural phenomena are reducible to quantum events in principle, but quantum mechanics does not always provide the best level of analysis. The many-body problem, chaotic avalanches, materials properties, biological organisms, and weather systems are better addressed at higher levels. Animals are highly organized, goal-directed, adaptive, selectionist, information-preserving, functionally redundant, multicellular, quasi-autonomous, highly mobile, reproducing, dissipative systems that conserve many fundamental features over remarkably long periods of time at the species level. Animal brains consist of massive, layered networks of specialized signaling cells with 10,000 communication points per cell, and interacting up to 1000 Hz. Neurons begin to divide and differentiate very early in gestation, and continue to develop until middle age. Waking brains operate far from thermodynamic equilibrium under delicate homeostatic control, making them extremely sensitive to a range of physical and chemical stimuli, highly adaptive, and able to produce a remarkable range of goal-relevant actions. Consciousness is “a difference that makes a difference” at the level of massive neuronal interactions in the most parallel-interactive anatomical structure of the mammalian brain, the cortico-thalamic (C-T) system. Other brain structures are not established to result in direct conscious experiences, at least in humans. However, indirect extra-cortical influences on the C-T system are pervasive. Learning, brain plasticity and major life adaptations may require conscious cognition. While brains evolved over hundreds of millions of years, and individual brains grow over months, years and decades, conscious events appear to have a duty cycle of ∼100 ms, fading after a few seconds. They can of course be refreshed by inner rehearsal, re-visualization, or attending to recurrent stimulus sources. These very distinctive brain events are needed when animals seek out and cope with new

  20. Tracking the processes behind conscious perception: a review of event-related potential correlates of visual consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Railo, Henry; Koivisto, Mika; Revonsuo, Antti

    2011-09-01

    Event-related potential (ERP) studies have attempted to discover the processes that underlie conscious visual perception by contrasting ERPs produced by stimuli that are consciously perceived with those that are not. Variability of the proposed ERP correlates of consciousness is considerable: the earliest proposed ERP correlate of consciousness (P1) coincides with sensory processes and the last one (P3) marks postperceptual processes. A negative difference wave called visual awareness negativity (VAN), typically observed around 200 ms after stimulus onset in occipitotemporal sites, gains strong support for reflecting the processes that correlate with, and possibly enable, aware visual perception. Research suggests that the early parts of conscious processing can proceed independently of top-down attention, although top-down attention may modulate visual processing even before consciousness. Evidence implies that the contents of consciousness are provided by interactions in the ventral stream, but indispensable contributions from dorsal regions influence already low-level visual responses.

  1. Sport and health——An examination based on human body consciousness%体育与健康——基于对人类身体意识的考察

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    高强

    2016-01-01

    There have been "beneficial" and "harmful" arguments about the relationship between sport and health all the time. Sports history study based on cultural history provides a new research theory and method for analyzing and setting the two arguments. The transition of human body consciousness becomes the core for probing into the relationship between sport and health. Under body holism in ancient Greece, sport formed the "holistic health" of the body, mind and society; under body dualism in the middle ages, health was divided, sport could only form physical health; while under the development of science, technologies and theories in the Renaissance period, sport was related to the health of the body, mind and society, but it formed "divided" health under the abstraction of ra-tional power. Analyzing the relationship between sport and health under the history of human body consciousness can resolve the current contradictive understandings about their relationship on the one hand, and enable body study to be carried out on sport and let sports history study feed back to history study on the other hand.%体育与健康的关系一直存在"有益"与"有害"的争论.基于文化背景下的体育史研究,为分析和解决两者争议提供了新的研究理论和方法.人类身体意识的变迁成为探究体育与健康关系的核心.在古希腊身体整体论下,体育形成身体、心灵与社会的"整体性"健康;在中世纪身心二元论下,健康被分裂,体育仅能形成身体健康;而在文艺复兴时期科学技术与理论的发展,体育又与身体、心灵与社会的健康相关,但却是在理性力量的抽象下形成"分裂"健康.在人类身体意识史下,对体育与健康的关系梳理,一方面能化解当前对两者关系的矛盾认识,另一方面也使身体研究能落实于体育之中,让体育史研究反哺历史学研究.

  2. Origin of facilitation of motor-evoked potentials after paired magnetic stimulation: direct recording of epidural activity in conscious humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Lazzaro, V; Pilato, F; Oliviero, A; Dileone, M; Saturno, E; Mazzone, P; Insola, A; Profice, P; Ranieri, F; Capone, F; Tonali, P A; Rothwell, J C

    2006-10-01

    A magnetic transcranial conditioning stimulus given over the motor cortex at intensities below active threshold for obtaining motor-evoked potentials (MEPs) facilitates EMG responses evoked at rest in hand muscles by a suprathreshold magnetic stimulus given 10-25 ms later. This is known as intracortical facilitation (ICF). We recorded descending volleys produced by single and paired magnetic motor cortex stimulation through high cervical epidural electrodes implanted for pain relief in six conscious patients. At interstimulus intervals (ISIs) of 10 and 15 ms, although MEP was facilitated, there was no change in the amplitude or number of descending volleys. An additional I wave sometimes was observed at 25 ms ISI. In one subject, we also evaluated the effects of reversing the direction of the induced current in the brain. At 10 ms ISI, the facilitation of the MEPs disappeared and was replaced by slight suppression; at 2 ms ISI, there was a pronounced facilitation of epidural volleys. Subsequent experiments on healthy subjects showed that a conditioning stimulus capable of producing ICF of MEPs had no effect on the EMG response evoked by transmastoidal electrical stimulation of corticospinal tract. We conclude that ICF occurs because either 1) the conditioning stimulus has a (thus far undetected) effect on spinal cord excitability that increases its response to the same amplitude test volley or 2) that it can alter the composition (but not the amplitude) of the descending volleys set up by the test stimulus such that a larger proportion of the activity is destined for the target muscle.

  3. Attention and Olfactory Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas eKeller

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the relation between attention and consciousness is an important part of our understanding of consciousness. Attention, unlike consciousness, can be systematically manipulated in psychophysical experiments and a law-like relation between attention and consciousness is waiting to be discovered. Most attempts to discover the nature of this relation are focused on a special type of attention: spatial visual attention. In this review I want to introduce another type of attention to the discussion: attention to the olfactory modality. I will first clarify the position of attention to smells in a general taxonomy of attention. I will then review the mechanisms and neuroanatomy of attention and consciousness in the olfactory system before using the newly introduced system to provide evidence that attention is necessary for consciousness.

  4. Neural correlates of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negrao, B L; Viljoen, M

    2009-11-01

    A basic understanding of consciousness and its neural correlates is of major importance for all clinicians, especially those involved with patients with altered states of consciousness. In this paper it is shown that consciousness is dependent on the brainstem and thalamus for arousal; that basic cognition is supported by recurrent electrical activity between the cortex and the thalamus at gamma band frequencies; aand that some kind of working memory must, at least fleetingly, be present for awareness to occur. The problem of cognitive binding and the role of attention are briefly addressed and it shown that consciousness depends on a multitude of subconscious processes. Although these processes do not represent consciousness, consciousness cannot exist without them.

  5. Consciousness and neural plasticity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    In contemporary consciousness studies the phenomenon of neural plasticity has received little attention despite the fact that neural plasticity is of still increased interest in neuroscience. We will, however, argue that neural plasticity could be of great importance to consciousness studies....... If consciousness is related to neural processes it seems, at least prima facie, that the ability of the neural structures to change should be reflected in a theory of this relationship "Neural plasticity" refers to the fact that the brain can change due to its own activity. The brain is not static but rather...... the relation between consciousness and brain functions. If consciousness is connected to specific brain structures (as a function or in identity) what happens to consciousness when those specific underlying structures change? It is therefore possible that the understanding and theories of neural plasticity can...

  6. Natural resources as a value important to the development of ecological consciousness of the polish society

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Żeber–Dzikowska Ilona

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The authors examine a very important issue concerning the concept of public consciousness and ecological consciousness of a human. They present ecological consciousness through indicating its level and factors that determine it. They discuss questions connected to shaping ecological consciousness in teachings of Saint John Paul II, sustainable development, eco-philosophy, and pro-ecological attitudes.

  7. The sense of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tannenbaum, A S

    2001-08-21

    I propose that consciousness might be understood as the property of a system that functions as a sense in the biological meaning of that term. The theory assumes that, as a complex system, the sense of consciousness is not a fixed structure but implies structure with variations and that it evolved, as many new functions do, through the integration of simpler systems. The recognized exteroceptive and enteroceptive senses provide information about the organism's environment and about the organism itself that are important to adaptation. The sense of consciousness provides information about the brain and thus about the organism and its environment. It senses other senses and processes in the brain, selecting and relating components into a form that "makes sense"-where making sense is defined as being useful to the organism in its adaptation to the environment. The theory argues that this highly adaptive organizing function evolved with the growing complexity of the brain and that it might have helped resolve discrepancies created at earlier stages. Neural energies in the brain that are the input to the sense of consciousness, along with the processing subsystem of which they are a part, constitute the base of consciousness. Consciousness itself is an emergent effect of an organizing process achieved through the sense of consciousness. The sense of consciousness thus serves an organizing function although it is not the only means of organization in the brain. Its uniqueness lies in the character of the organization it creates with consciousness as a property of that organization. The paper relates the theory to several general conceptions-interactionism, epiphenomenalism and identity theory-and illustrates a number of testable hypotheses. Viewing consciousness as a property of a sense provides a degree of conceptual integration. Much of what we know about the evolution and role of the conventionally recognized senses should help us understand the evolution and role of

  8. Some Mid-Life Ruminations on the Human Capacity to Transcend One's Acculturation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rousseve, Ronald J.

    1983-01-01

    The dialectical capacity of human consciousness enables us to generate alternatives in opposition to previous conditioning. Transcending one's acculturation need not leave one searching for gurus. Authentic personal meaning may be attained from an existential reawakening. (RM)

  9. Parabens enable suspension growth of MCF-10A immortalized, non-transformed human breast epithelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khanna, Sugandha; Darbre, Philippa D

    2013-05-01

    Parabens (alkyl esters of p-hydroxybenzoic acid) are used extensively as preservatives in consumer products, and intact esters have been measured in several human tissues. Concerns of a potential link between parabens and breast cancer have been raised, but mechanistic studies have centred on their oestrogenic activity and little attention has been paid to any carcinogenic properties. In the present study, we report that parabens can induce anchorage-independent growth of MCF-10A immortalized but non-transformed human breast epithelial cells, a property closely related to transformation and a predictor of tumour growth in vivo. In semi-solid methocel suspension culture, MCF-10A cells produced very few colonies and only of a small size but the addition of 5 × 10(-4) M methylparaben, 10(-5) M n-propylparaben or 10(-5) M n-butylparaben resulted in a greater number of colonies per dish (P paraben concentrations in human breast tissue samples from 40 mastectomies (Barr et al., 2012) showed that 22/40 of the patients had at least one of the parabens at the site of the primary tumour at or above these concentrations. To our knowledge, this is the first study to report that parabens can induce a transformed phenotype in human breast epithelial cells in vitro, and further investigation is now justified into a potential link between parabens and breast carcinogenesis. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  10. Human missions to Mars enabling technologies for exploring the red planet

    CERN Document Server

    Rapp, Donald

    2016-01-01

    A mission to send humans to explore the surface of Mars has been the ultimate goal of planetary exploration since the 1950s, when von Braun conjectured a flotilla of 10 interplanetary vessels carrying a crew of at least 70 humans. Since then, more than 1,000 studies were carried out on human missions to Mars, but after 60 years of study, we remain in the early planning stages. The second edition of this book now includes an annotated history of Mars mission studies, with quantitative data wherever possible. Retained from the first edition, Donald Rapp looks at human missions to Mars from an engineering perspective. He divides the mission into a number of stages: Earth’s surface to low-Earth orbit (LEO); departing from LEO toward Mars; Mars orbit insertion and entry, descent and landing; ascent from Mars; trans-Earth injection from Mars orbit and Earth return. For each segment, he analyzes requirements for candidate technologies. In this connection, he discusses the status and potential of a wide range of el...

  11. Reference Maps of human ES and iPS cell variation enable high-throughput characterization of pluripotent cell lines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bock, Christoph; Kiskinis, Evangelos; Verstappen, Griet; Gu, Hongcang; Boulting, Gabriella; Smith, Zachary D; Ziller, Michael; Croft, Gist F; Amoroso, Mackenzie W; Oakley, Derek H; Gnirke, Andreas; Eggan, Kevin; Meissner, Alexander

    2011-02-04

    The developmental potential of human pluripotent stem cells suggests that they can produce disease-relevant cell types for biomedical research. However, substantial variation has been reported among pluripotent cell lines, which could affect their utility and clinical safety. Such cell-line-specific differences must be better understood before one can confidently use embryonic stem (ES) or induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells in translational research. Toward this goal we have established genome-wide reference maps of DNA methylation and gene expression for 20 previously derived human ES lines and 12 human iPS cell lines, and we have measured the in vitro differentiation propensity of these cell lines. This resource enabled us to assess the epigenetic and transcriptional similarity of ES and iPS cells and to predict the differentiation efficiency of individual cell lines. The combination of assays yields a scorecard for quick and comprehensive characterization of pluripotent cell lines.

  12. A membrane vesicle-based assay to enable prediction of human biliary excretion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colombo, Federico; Poirier, Hugo; Rioux, Nathalie; Montecillo, Maria Arias; Duan, Jianmin; Ribadeneira, Maria D

    2013-10-01

    1. Prediction of biliary excretion is a challenge due to the lack of in vitro assays. Our laboratory previously demonstrated a highly significant correlation between in vitro IC50 values against mrp2 using rat canalicular liver plasma membrane vesicles and in vivo biliary excretion (Colombo et al., 2012). This study explores the possibility of predicting in vivo biliary excretion in human using membrane vesicles prepared from MDCKII cells transfected with human ABCC2. 2. In vitro MRP2 activity was determined by measuring the ATP-dependent uptake of 5(6)-carboxy-2',7'-dichlorofluorescein (CDCF) in inside-out membrane vesicles isolated from MDCK-ABCC2 cells. CDCF uptake was time- and concentration-dependent (Km of 4.0 ± 1.2 µM and a Vmax of 7.8 ± 0.9 pmol/mg/min) and inhibited by benzbromarone and MK-571 with IC50 values of 1.2 and 7.6 µM, respectively. 3. A significant linear correlation (r(2 )= 0.790) between the in vitro IC50 values from the described MRP2 assay and in vivo biliary excretion in humans was observed using 11 well-documented drugs covering low to high biliary excretions. 4. This study demonstrates, for the first time, that inhibition of CDCF uptake in MDCKII-ABCC2 vesicles not only provides a screening assay to assess MRP2 drug-drug interaction potential, but is also predictive of human MRP2-mediated biliary excretion.

  13. Fluorescent nanodiamonds enable quantitative tracking of human mesenchymal stem cells in miniature pigs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Long-Jyun; Wu, Meng-Shiue; Hui, Yuen Yung; Chang, Be-Ming; Pan, Lei; Hsu, Pei-Chen; Chen, Yit-Tsong; Ho, Hong-Nerng; Huang, Yen-Hua; Ling, Thai-Yen; Hsu, Hsao-Hsun; Chang, Huan-Cheng

    2017-03-01

    Cell therapy is a promising strategy for the treatment of human diseases. While the first use of cells for therapeutic purposes can be traced to the 19th century, there has been a lack of general and reliable methods to study the biodistribution and associated pharmacokinetics of transplanted cells in various animal models for preclinical evaluation. Here, we present a new platform using albumin-conjugated fluorescent nanodiamonds (FNDs) as biocompatible and photostable labels for quantitative tracking of human placenta choriodecidual membrane-derived mesenchymal stem cells (pcMSCs) in miniature pigs by magnetic modulation. With this background-free detection technique and time-gated fluorescence imaging, we have been able to precisely determine the numbers as well as positions of the transplanted FND-labeled pcMSCs in organs and tissues of the miniature pigs after intravenous administration. The method is applicable to single-cell imaging and quantitative tracking of human stem/progenitor cells in rodents and other animal models as well.

  14. Fluorescent nanodiamonds enable quantitative tracking of human mesenchymal stem cells in miniature pigs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Long-Jyun; Wu, Meng-Shiue; Hui, Yuen Yung; Chang, Be-Ming; Pan, Lei; Hsu, Pei-Chen; Chen, Yit-Tsong; Ho, Hong-Nerng; Huang, Yen-Hua; Ling, Thai-Yen; Hsu, Hsao-Hsun; Chang, Huan-Cheng

    2017-01-01

    Cell therapy is a promising strategy for the treatment of human diseases. While the first use of cells for therapeutic purposes can be traced to the 19th century, there has been a lack of general and reliable methods to study the biodistribution and associated pharmacokinetics of transplanted cells in various animal models for preclinical evaluation. Here, we present a new platform using albumin-conjugated fluorescent nanodiamonds (FNDs) as biocompatible and photostable labels for quantitative tracking of human placenta choriodecidual membrane-derived mesenchymal stem cells (pcMSCs) in miniature pigs by magnetic modulation. With this background-free detection technique and time-gated fluorescence imaging, we have been able to precisely determine the numbers as well as positions of the transplanted FND-labeled pcMSCs in organs and tissues of the miniature pigs after intravenous administration. The method is applicable to single-cell imaging and quantitative tracking of human stem/progenitor cells in rodents and other animal models as well. PMID:28358111

  15. Altering spinal cord excitability enables voluntary movements after chronic complete paralysis in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angeli, Claudia A; Edgerton, V Reggie; Gerasimenko, Yury P; Harkema, Susan J

    2014-05-01

    Previously, we reported that one individual who had a motor complete, but sensory incomplete spinal cord injury regained voluntary movement after 7 months of epidural stimulation and stand training. We presumed that the residual sensory pathways were critical in this recovery. However, we now report in three more individuals voluntary movement occurred with epidural stimulation immediately after implant even in two who were diagnosed with a motor and sensory complete lesion. We demonstrate that neuromodulating the spinal circuitry with epidural stimulation, enables completely paralysed individuals to process conceptual, auditory and visual input to regain relatively fine voluntary control of paralysed muscles. We show that neuromodulation of the sub-threshold motor state of excitability of the lumbosacral spinal networks was the key to recovery of intentional movement in four of four individuals diagnosed as having complete paralysis of the legs. We have uncovered a fundamentally new intervention strategy that can dramatically affect recovery of voluntary movement in individuals with complete paralysis even years after injury.

  16. Enabling Robotic Social Intelligence by Engineering Human Social-Cognitive Mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wiltshire, Travis; Warta, Samantha F.; Barber, Daniel

    2017-01-01

    for artificial cognitive systems. We discuss a recent integrative perspective of social cognition to provide a systematic theoretical underpinning for computational instantiations of these mechanisms. We highlight several commitments of our approach that we refer to as Engineering Human Social Cognition. We...... then provide a series of recommendations to facilitate the development of the perceptual, motor, and cognitive architecture for this proposed artificial cognitive system in future work. For each recommendation, we highlight their relation to the discussed social-cognitive mechanisms, provide the rationale...

  17. Sleep neuroimaging and models of consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enzo eTagliazucchi

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Human deep sleep is characterized by reduced or absent sensory activity, responsiveness to stimuli and conscious awareness. Given its ubiquity and reversible nature, it represents an attractive paradigm to study the neural changes which accompany the loss of consciousness in humans. In particular, the deepest stages of sleep can serve as an empirical test for the predictions of theoretical models relating the phenomenology of consciousness with underlying neural activity. A relatively recent shift of attention from the analysis of evoked responses towards spontaneous (or ``resting state'' activity has taken place in the neuroimaging community, together with the development of tools suitable to study distributed functional interactions. In this review we focus on recent functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI studies of spontaneous activity during sleep and their relationship with theoretical models for human consciousness generation, considering the global workspace theory, the information integration theory and the dynamical core hypothesis. We discuss the venues of research opened by these results, emphasizing the need to extend the analytic methodology in order to obtain a dynamical picture of how functional interactions change over time and how their evolution is modulated during different conscious states. Finally, we discuss the need to experimentally establish absent or reduced conscious content, even when studying the deepest sleep stages.

  18. Collective Consciousness and Idealist Philosophy

    OpenAIRE

    Randrup, Dr. Axel

    2005-01-01

    Abstract Descriptions of publications on collective consciousness, collective conscious experience, and idealist philosophy by Axel Randrup. The recognition of collective consciousness overcomes the problem of solipsism, which has been seen as an argument against idealist philosophy.

  19. The Quantum Computing Conscious Universe and The Extended Deep Ecology Hypothesis: Implications for Medicine, Agriculture and Technology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monendra Grover

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available The human consciousness has been proposed to have several levels of consciousness, some of which are higher than others. I propose that the universe also has several levels of consciousness. To quantify the states of consciousness I propose the term consciousness vector. I further propose a extended deep ecology hypothesis which states that all human activity, including in the fields of medicine, agriculture and technology should be targeted so as to achieve the highest levels of consciousness of the universe (or the highest magnitude of the consciousness vector. The elementary particles have been proposed to have consciousness which is “lost” in bigger chunks of non living mater due to quantum decoherence. The non-living matter may also become quantum coherent in the higher states of consciousness of the universe. Thus I envisage that higher levels of consciousness of universe would include non living matter which may become conscious in the described state of consciousness of universe.

  20. Neural Darwinism and consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seth, Anil K; Baars, Bernard J

    2005-03-01

    Neural Darwinism (ND) is a large scale selectionist theory of brain development and function that has been hypothesized to relate to consciousness. According to ND, consciousness is entailed by reentrant interactions among neuronal populations in the thalamocortical system (the 'dynamic core'). These interactions, which permit high-order discriminations among possible core states, confer selective advantages on organisms possessing them by linking current perceptual events to a past history of value-dependent learning. Here, we assess the consistency of ND with 16 widely recognized properties of consciousness, both physiological (for example, consciousness is associated with widespread, relatively fast, low amplitude interactions in the thalamocortical system), and phenomenal (for example, consciousness involves the existence of a private flow of events available only to the experiencing subject). While no theory accounts fully for all of these properties at present, we find that ND and its recent extensions fare well.

  1. The large-scale functional connectivity correlates of consciousness and arousal during the healthy and pathological human sleep cycle

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tagliazucchi, E.; van Someren, Eus J W

    2017-01-01

    Advances in neuroimaging have greatly improved our understanding of human sleep from a systems neuroscience perspective. However, cognition and awareness are reduced during sleep, hindering the applicability of standard task-based paradigms. Methods recently developed to study spontaneous brain

  2. Expression and Distribution Characteristics of Human Ortholog of Mammalian Enabled (hMena) in Glioma

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xue-tao Dong; Xue-jun Yang; Hua-min Wang; Wei Wang; Lj Yu; Bin Zhang; Sheng-ping Yu; Hao-lang Ming

    2011-01-01

    Objective:To investigate the utility of hMena,a family of enabled/vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (Ena/VASP),we sought to characterize the expression profile and distribution characteristics of hMena in a large panel of glioma samples and determine whether hMena expression levels might correlate with the pathological grade of glioma.Methods:Sixty-five specimens of glioma with different pathological grades and five control brain tissues were collected.in 6 of the 21 glioblastoma patients,multi-specimens were obtained respectively from the main tumor mass,the junction zone between the tumor and the normal tissue,and adjacent brain tissue 1.5 cm away from the tumor boundary under assistance of neuronavigation system during the operation.Immunohistochemistry was used to detect the expression and distribution characteristics of hMena.hMena expression was analyzed by Western blot in 20 specimens.Results:The hMena expression was negative in control brain tissue but positive in different grades of glioma.The expression rate of hMena was positively correlated with the increasing grade of the World Health Orgnization (WHO) classification (rs=0.682,P=0.000).hMena was located in cytoplasm.Positive cells only distributed around the vessels within the tumor mass in low grade glioma,while in high grade glioma,these cells were able to be detected not only in the tumor but also in the boundary zone and adjacent brain parenchyma.In the tumor mass,hMena expressed highly and diffusedly.In the junction zone,hMena positive cells formed radiolitic pattern around the vessels.In adjacent brain parenchyma,single positive cell was scattered.hMena expression was markedly elevated in Grade Ⅲ and Ⅳ glioma compared with Grade Ⅱ and Ⅰ.Conclusion:Our data suggested that the expression of hMena is closely related to malignant grade of glioma.hMena can label the migrating cells,and indicate the migrating path of glioma cells from the tumor to adjacent tissue along with the vascular

  3. The Elementary Field of Consciousness and its Manifestations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monendra Grover

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Two kinds of relations are generally proposed between consciousness and matter. Firstly matter gives rise to consciousness and secondly consciousness gives rise to matter. The second possibility is explored in the paper. The term consciousness vector has been proposed by the author earlier. In this paper the origin of space, time and matter is discussed in the terms of consciousness vector. It is proposed that every form of the matter has the potential to reach the highest level of consciousness. Other aspects such as disease in biological organisms and Consciousness vector, do the human beings have the capacity to understand the universe? , implications for finearts, ethics, law, development, economics and politics are discussed. Thought Experiments to prove the above hypothesis are also proposed. Finally the future of the universe is discussed.

  4. Adding value through accelerator mass spectrometry-enabled first in human studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seymour, Mark A

    2016-12-01

    Accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) is an ultra-sensitive technique for the analysis of radiocarbon. It is applicable to bioanalysis of any (14) C-labelled analyte and any sample type. The increasing body of data generated using LC+AMS indicates that the methodology is robust and reliable, and capable of meeting the same validation criteria as conventional bioanalytical techniques. Because it is a tracer technique, AMS is capable of discriminating between an administered radiolabelled dose and endogenous compound or non-radiolabelled compound administered separately. This paper discusses how it can be used to enhance the design of first in human (FIH) clinical studies and generate significant additional data, including: fundamental pharmacokinetics (CL and V), absolute bioavailability, mass balance, routes and rates of excretion, metabolic fate (including first-pass metabolism, identification of biliary metabolites and quantitative data to address metabolite safety testing issues), and tissue disposition of parent compound and metabolites. Because the (14) C-labelled microtracer dose is administered at the same time as a pharmacologically relevant non-radiolabelled dose, there is no concern about dose-linearity. However the mass of the microtracer dose itself is negligible and therefore does not affect the outcome of the FIH study. The addition of microtracer doses to a FIH study typically requires little additional expense, apart from the AMS analytics, making the approach cost-effective. It can also save significant time, compared to conventional approaches, and, by providing reliable human in vivo data as early as possible, prevent unnecessary expenditure later in drug development.

  5. Glove-Enabled Computer Operations (GECO): Design and Testing of an Extravehicular Activity Glove Adapted for Human-Computer Interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Richard J.; Olowin, Aaron; Krepkovich, Eileen; Hannaford, Blake; Lindsay, Jack I. C.; Homer, Peter; Patrie, James T.; Sands, O. Scott

    2013-01-01

    The Glove-Enabled Computer Operations (GECO) system enables an extravehicular activity (EVA) glove to be dual-purposed as a human-computer interface device. This paper describes the design and human participant testing of a right-handed GECO glove in a pressurized glove box. As part of an investigation into the usability of the GECO system for EVA data entry, twenty participants were asked to complete activities including (1) a Simon Says Games in which they attempted to duplicate random sequences of targeted finger strikes and (2) a Text Entry activity in which they used the GECO glove to enter target phrases in two different virtual keyboard modes. In a within-subjects design, both activities were performed both with and without vibrotactile feedback. Participants mean accuracies in correctly generating finger strikes with the pressurized glove were surprisingly high, both with and without the benefit of tactile feedback. Five of the subjects achieved mean accuracies exceeding 99 in both conditions. In Text Entry, tactile feedback provided a statistically significant performance benefit, quantified by characters entered per minute, as well as reduction in error rate. Secondary analyses of responses to a NASA Task Loader Index (TLX) subjective workload assessments reveal a benefit for tactile feedback in GECO glove use for data entry. This first-ever investigation of employment of a pressurized EVA glove for human-computer interface opens up a wide range of future applications, including text chat communications, manipulation of procedureschecklists, cataloguingannotating images, scientific note taking, human-robot interaction, and control of suit andor other EVA systems.

  6. A narrative method for consciousness research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz, José-Luis

    2013-01-01

    Some types of first-person narrations of mental processes that constitute phenomenological accounts and texts, such as internal monolog statements, epitomize the best expressions and representations of human consciousness available and therefore may be used to model phenomenological streams of consciousness. The type of autonomous monolog in which an author or narrator declares actual mental processes in a think aloud manner seems particularly suitable for modeling streams of consciousness. A narrative method to extract and depict conscious processes, operations, contents, and states from an acceptable phenomenological text would require three subsequent steps: operational criteria for producing and/or selecting a phenomenological text, a system for detecting text items that are indicative of conscious contents and processes, and a procedure for representing such items in formal dynamic system devices such as Petri nets. The requirements and restrictions of each of these steps are presented, analyzed, and applied to phenomenological texts in the following manner: (1) the relevance of introspective language and narrative analyses to consciousness research and the idea that specific narratives are of paramount interest for such investigation is justified; (2) some of the obstacles and constraints to attain plausible consciousness inferences from narrative texts and the methodological requirements to extract and depict items relevant to consciousness contents and operations from a suitable phenomenological text are examined; (3) a preliminary exercise of the proposed method is used to analyze and chart a classical interior monolog excerpted from James Joyce's Ulysses, a masterpiece of the stream-of-consciousness literary technique and, finally, (4) an inter-subjective evaluation for inter-observer agreement of mental attributions of another phenomenological text (an excerpt from the Intimate Journal of Miguel de Unamuno) is presented using some mathematical tools.

  7. A narrative method for consciousness research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José-Luis eDíaz

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Some types of first person narrations of mental processes that constitute phenomenological parliaments and texts, such as internal monologue statements, epitomize the best expressions and representations of human consciousness available and therefore may be used to model phenomenological streams of consciousness. The type of autonomous monologue in which an author or narrator declares actual mental processes in a think aloud manner seems particularly suitable for modeling streams of consciousness. A narrative method to extract and depict conscious processes, operations, contents, and states from an acceptable phenomenological text would require three subsequent steps: operational criteria for producing and/or selecting a phenomenological text, a system for detecting text items that are indicative of conscious contents and processes, and a procedure for representing such items in formal dynamic system devices such as Petri nets. The requirements and restrictions of each of these steps are presented, analyzed, and applied to phenomenological texts in the following manner: (1 The relevance of introspective language and narrative analyses to consciousness research and the idea that specific narratives are of paramount interest for such investigation is justified; (2 Some of the obstacles and constraints to attain plausible consciousness inferences from narrative texts and the methodological requirements to extract and depict items relevant to consciousness contents and operations from a suitable phenomenological text are examined; (3 A preliminary exercise of the proposed method is used to analyze and chart a classical interior monologue excerpted from James Joyce’s Ulysses, a masterpiece of the stream-of-consciousness literary technique and, finally, an inter-subjective evaluation for inter-observer agreement of mental attributions of another phenomenological text (an excerpt from the Intimate Journal of Miguel de Unamuno is presented using some

  8. Martian Surface Boundary Layer Characterization: Enabling Environmental Data for Science, Engineering and Human Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    England, C.

    2000-01-01

    For human or large robotic exploration of Mars, engineering devices such as power sources will be utilized that interact closely with the Martian environment. Heat sources for power production, for example, will use the low ambient temperature for efficient heat rejection. The Martian ambient, however, is highly variable, and will have a first order influence on the efficiency and operation of all large-scale equipment. Diurnal changes in temperature, for example, can vary the theoretical efficiency of power production by 15% and affect the choice of equipment, working fluids, and operating parameters. As part of the Mars Exploration program, missions must acquire the environmental data needed for design, operation and maintenance of engineering equipment including the transportation devices. The information should focus on the variability of the environment, and on the differences among locations including latitudes, altitudes, and seasons. This paper outlines some of the WHY's, WHAT's and WHERE's of the needed data, as well as some examples of how this data will be used. Environmental data for engineering design should be considered a priority in Mars Exploration planning. The Mars Thermal Environment Radiator Characterization (MTERC), and Dust Accumulation and Removal Technology (DART) experiments planned for early Mars landers are examples of information needed for even small robotic missions. Large missions will require proportionately more accurate data that encompass larger samples of the Martian surface conditions. In achieving this goal, the Mars Exploration program will also acquire primary data needed for understanding Martian weather, surface evolution, and ground-atmosphere interrelationships.

  9. Triboelectric Nanogenerator Enabled Body Sensor Network for Self-Powered Human Heart-Rate Monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Zhiming; Chen, Jun; Li, Xiaoshi; Zhou, Zhihao; Meng, Keyu; Wei, Wei; Yang, Jin; Wang, Zhong Lin

    2017-09-26

    Heart-rate monitoring plays a critical role in personal healthcare management. A low-cost, noninvasive, and user-friendly heart-rate monitoring system is highly desirable. Here, a self-powered wireless body sensor network (BSN) system is developed for heart-rate monitoring via integration of a downy-structure-based triboelectric nanogenerator (D-TENG), a power management circuit, a heart-rate sensor, a signal processing unit, and Bluetooth module for wireless data transmission. By converting the inertia energy of human walking into electric power, a maximum power of 2.28 mW with total conversion efficiency of 57.9% was delivered at low operation frequency, which is capable of immediately and sustainably driving the highly integrated BSN system. The acquired heart-rate signal by the sensor would be processed in the signal process circuit, sent to an external device via the Bluetooth module, and displayed on a personal cell phone in a real-time manner. Moreover, by combining a TENG-based generator and a TENG-based sensor, an all-TENG-based wireless BSN system was developed, realizing continuous and self-powered heart-rate monitoring. This work presents a potential method for personal heart-rate monitoring, featured as being self-powered, cost-effective, noninvasive, and user-friendly.

  10. Martian Surface Boundary Layer Characterization: Enabling Environmental Data for Science, Engineering and Human Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    England, C.

    2000-01-01

    For human or large robotic exploration of Mars, engineering devices such as power sources will be utilized that interact closely with the Martian environment. Heat sources for power production, for example, will use the low ambient temperature for efficient heat rejection. The Martian ambient, however, is highly variable, and will have a first order influence on the efficiency and operation of all large-scale equipment. Diurnal changes in temperature, for example, can vary the theoretical efficiency of power production by 15% and affect the choice of equipment, working fluids, and operating parameters. As part of the Mars Exploration program, missions must acquire the environmental data needed for design, operation and maintenance of engineering equipment including the transportation devices. The information should focus on the variability of the environment, and on the differences among locations including latitudes, altitudes, and seasons. This paper outlines some of the WHY's, WHAT's and WHERE's of the needed data, as well as some examples of how this data will be used. Environmental data for engineering design should be considered a priority in Mars Exploration planning. The Mars Thermal Environment Radiator Characterization (MTERC), and Dust Accumulation and Removal Technology (DART) experiments planned for early Mars landers are examples of information needed for even small robotic missions. Large missions will require proportionately more accurate data that encompass larger samples of the Martian surface conditions. In achieving this goal, the Mars Exploration program will also acquire primary data needed for understanding Martian weather, surface evolution, and ground-atmosphere interrelationships.

  11. Functional proteomics screen enables enrichment of distinct cell types from human pancreatic islets.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Revital Sharivkin

    Full Text Available The current world-wide epidemic of diabetes has prompted attempts to generate new sources of insulin-producing cells for cell replacement therapy. An inherent challenge in many of these strategies is the lack of cell-surface markers permitting isolation and characterization of specific cell types from differentiating stem cell populations. Here we introduce an iterative proteomics procedure allowing tag-free isolation of cell types based on their function. Our method detects and associates specific cell-surface markers with particular cell functionality by coupling cell capture on antibody arrays with immunofluorescent labeling. Using this approach in an iterative manner, we discovered marker combinations capable of enriching for discrete pancreatic cell subtypes from human islets of Langerhans: insulin-producing beta cells (CD9high/CD56+, glucagon-producing alpha cells (CD9-/CD56+ and trypsin-producing acinar cells (CD9-/CD56-. This strategy may assist future beta cell research and the development of diagnostic tools for diabetes. It can also be applied more generally for function-based purification of desired cell types from other limited and heterogeneous biological samples.

  12. Consciousness in dreams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kahn, David; Gover, Tzivia

    2010-01-01

    This chapter argues that dreaming is an important state of consciousness and that it has many features that complement consciousness in the wake state. The chapter discusses consciousness in dreams and how it comes about. It discusses the changes that occur in the neuromodulatory environment and in the neuronal connectivity of the brain as we fall asleep and begin our night journeys. Dreams evolve from internal sources though the dream may look different than any one of these since something entirely new may emerge through self-organizing processes. The chapter also explores characteristics of dreaming consciousness such as acceptance of implausibility and how that might lead to creative insight. Examples of studies, which have shown creativity in dream sleep, are provided to illustrate important characteristics of dreaming consciousness. The chapter also discusses the dream body and how it relates to our consciousness while dreaming. Differences and similarities between wake, lucid, non-lucid and day dreaming are explored and the chapter concludes with a discussion on what we can learn from each of these expressions of consciousness. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Consciousness during dreams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cicogna, P C; Bosinelli, M

    2001-03-01

    Two aspects of consciousness are first considered: consciousness as awareness (phenomenological meaning) and consciousness as strategic control (functional meaning). As to awareness, three types can be distinguished: first, awareness as the phenomenal experiences of objects and events; second, awareness as meta-awareness, i.e., the awareness of mental life itself; third, awareness as self-awareness, i.e., the awareness of being oneself. While phenomenal experience and self-awareness are usually present during dreaming (even if many modifications are possible), meta-awareness is usually absent (apart from some particular experiences of self-reflectiveness) with the major exception of lucid dreaming. Consciousness as strategic control may also be present in dreams. The functioning of consciousness is then analyzed, following a cognitive model of dream production. In such a model, the dream is supposed to be the product of the interaction of three components: (a) the bottom-up activation of mnemonic elements coming from LTM systems, (b) interpretative and elaborative top-down processes, and (c) monitoring of phenomenal experience. A feedback circulation is activated among the components, where the top-down interpretative organization and the conscious monitoring of the oneiric scene elicitates other mnemonic contents, according to the requirements of the dream plot. This dream productive activity is submitted to unconscious and conscious processes. Copyright 2001 Academic Press.

  14. The neurophysical basis of mind and consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beichler, James

    2012-04-01

    A living body is just a complex pattern of energetic particle exchanges to physicists when compared to the biochemical processes studied by chemists and biologists. New research has centered more upon the electric, magnetic and electromagnetic characteristics of life. It is easy to model mind and consciousness as the electric and magnetic counterparts of living organisms. Mind is an extremely complex electric scalar field pattern and consciousness is the corresponding magnetic vector potential field pattern. As humans, we may have the most complex and advanced mind and consciousness known, but all living organisms display mind and consciousness at various lower levels than our human mind and consciousness. Mind and consciousness have mistakenly become associated with the brain and no other part of the body because of the dense concentration of neurons in the brain. A strict study of the magnetic vector potential field patterns associated with neural microtubules, neurons and neural nets demonstrates how thoughts and streams of thought originate in the brain and are stored magnetically. Microtubules, which act as magnetic induction coils, are the primary structural bio-unit used for building, storing and retrieving memories in the mind.

  15. Is Your Gut Conscious? Is an Extraterrestrial?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vos Post, Jonathan

    2011-10-01

    This paper speculates on questions intending to be taken scientifically rather than metaphysically: "Can the human gut (enteric nervous system) be conscious?"; "Can your immune system think?"; "Could consciousness be coded in DNA?"; "What do we mean when asserting that an Extraterrestrial is Thinking, or is Conscious? We explore through reference to theory, experiment, and computational models by Christof Koch (Caltech), Barbara Wold (Caltech), and Stuart Kauffman (University of Calgary, Tampere University of Technology, Santa Fe Institute). We use a tentative new definition of thinking, designed to be applicable for humans, cetecea, corvids, artificial intelligences, and extraterrestrial intelligences of any substrate (i.e. Life as We Do Not Know It): "Thinking is the occurrence, transformation, and storage in a mind or brain (or simulation thereof) of information-bearing structures (representations) of one kind or another, such as thoughts, concept, percepts, ideas, impressions, notions, rules, schemas, images, phantasms, or subpersonal representations." We use the framework for Consciousness developed by Francis Crick and Christof Koch. We try to describe scientific goals, but discuss Philosophy sufficient to avoid naïve philosophical category errors (thus are careful not to conflate thought, consciousness, and language) Penrose, Hameroff, and Kauffman speculate (differently) that CNS consciousness is a macroscopic quantum phenomenon. Might intestinal, immune system, or genetic regulatory network dynamics exhibit emergent cooperative quantum effects? The speculations are in the context of Evolution by Natural Selection, presumed to operate throughout the Cosmos, and recent work in the foundations of Computational Biology and Quantum Mechanics.

  16. (Not) Made by the human hand: media consciousness and immediacy in the cultural production of the real

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van de Port, M.

    2011-01-01

    Taking its examples from the realm of popular religion and popular culture, this essay shows how sensations of im-mediacy are sought and produced in a great number of fantasy scripts. Some of these scripts seek to undo media-awareness: concealing or denying the involvement of the human hand they pro

  17. From cholesterol to consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torday, John S

    2017-08-19

    The nature of consciousness has been debated for centuries. It can be understood as part and parcel of the natural progression of life from unicellular to multicellular, calcium fluxes mediating communication within and between cells. Consciousness is the vertical integration of calcium fluxes, mediated by the Target of Rapamycin gene integrated with the cytoskeleton. The premise of this paper is that there is a fundamental physiologic integration of the organism with the environment that constitutes consciousness. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. The Methodology of Psychological Research of Ecological Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irina A. Shmeleva

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper examines the methodological principles of the psychological study of ecological consciousness as one of the urgent interdisciplinary problems of XX–XXI century, caused by the aggravation of global ecological problems and the need for the realization of the “sustainable development”ideas. Ecological consciousness is considered as multilayered, dynamic, reflexive element of human consciousness, incorporating multivariate, holistic aspects of interaction of the human being as the H.S. and the Humanity representative with the environment and the Planet. The possibility of the more active introduction of Russian psychology in the process is argued for in connection with the existing conceptual approaches, which compose the methodological basis for ecological consciousness research. Among these approaches are considered: the principles of holistic study of the human being by B. Ananyev, the methodology of system psychological description by V. Gansen and G. Sukhodolsky, the idea of reflexivity of consciousness by S. Rubinstein, the humanitarian- ecological imperative of the development of consciousness by V. Zinchenko, the theory of relations by V. Myasishev, consideration of ecological consciousness as relation to nature by S. Deryabo and V. Yasvin, theories of consciousness by V. Petrenko, V. Allakhverdov and other Russian psychologists. The value component of ecological consciousness is distinguished as the most significant. The possibility of applying the Values’ theory of the by S. Schwartz for studying the ecological values is discussed along with the prognostic potential of the universalism value.

  19. Logical Evaluation of Consciousness: For Incorporating Consciousness into Machine Architecture

    OpenAIRE

    2010-01-01

    Machine Consciousness is the study of consciousness in a biological, philosophical, mathematical and physical perspective and designing a model that can fit into a programmable system architecture. Prime objective of the study is to make the system architecture behave consciously like a biological model does. Present work has developed a feasible definition of consciousness, that characterizes consciousness with four parameters i.e., parasitic, symbiotic, self referral and reproduction. Prese...

  20. Are We Explaining Consciousness Yet?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dennett, Daniel

    2001-01-01

    Maintains that theorists are converging on a version of the global neuronal workspace model of consciousness, but that there are residual confusions to be dissolved. Asserts that global accessibility is not the "cause" of consciousness, it "is" consciousness. Argues that like fame, consciousness is not a momentary condition or…

  1. Evolution of consciousness.

    OpenAIRE

    Eccles, J C

    1992-01-01

    The hypothesis of the origin of consciousness is built upon the unique properties of the mammalian neocortex. The apical dendrites of the pyramidal cells bundle together as they ascend to lamina I to form neural receptor units of approximately 100 apical dendrites plus branches receiving hundreds of thousands of excitatory synapses, the collective assemblage being called a dendron. It is proposed that the whole world of consciousness, the mental world, is microgranular, with mental units call...

  2. Direct hydrogel encapsulation of pluripotent stem cells enables ontomimetic differentiation and growth of engineered human heart tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerscher, Petra; Turnbull, Irene C; Hodge, Alexander J; Kim, Joonyul; Seliktar, Dror; Easley, Christopher J; Costa, Kevin D; Lipke, Elizabeth A

    2016-03-01

    Human engineered heart tissues have potential to revolutionize cardiac development research, drug-testing, and treatment of heart disease; however, implementation is limited by the need to use pre-differentiated cardiomyocytes (CMs). Here we show that by providing a 3D poly(ethylene glycol)-fibrinogen hydrogel microenvironment, we can directly differentiate human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) into contracting heart tissues. Our straight-forward, ontomimetic approach, imitating the process of development, requires only a single cell-handling step, provides reproducible results for a range of tested geometries and size scales, and overcomes inherent limitations in cell maintenance and maturation, while achieving high yields of CMs with developmentally appropriate temporal changes in gene expression. We demonstrate that hPSCs encapsulated within this biomimetic 3D hydrogel microenvironment develop into functional cardiac tissues composed of self-aligned CMs with evidence of ultrastructural maturation, mimicking heart development, and enabling investigation of disease mechanisms and screening of compounds on developing human heart tissue.

  3. Enabling the human mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosley, John

    The duplication of earth conditions aboard a spacecraft or planetary surface habitat requires 60 lb/day/person of food, potable and hygiene water, and oxygen. A 1000-day mission to Mars would therefore require 30 tons of such supplies per crew member in the absence of a closed-cycle, or regenerative, life-support system. An account is given of the development status of regenerative life-support systems, as well as of the requisite radiation protection and EVA systems, the health-maintenance and medical care facilities, zero-gravity deconditioning measures, and planetary surface conditions protection.

  4. The quantitative measurement of consciousness during epileptic seizures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nani, Andrea; Cavanna, Andrea E

    2014-01-01

    The assessment of consciousness is a fundamental element in the classification of epileptic seizures. It is, therefore, of great importance for clinical practice to develop instruments that enable an accurate and reliable measurement of the alteration of consciousness during seizures. Over the last few years, three psychometric scales have been specifically proposed to measure ictal consciousness: the Ictal Consciousness Inventory (ICI), the Consciousness Seizure Scale (CSS), and the Responsiveness in Epilepsy Scale--versions I and II (RES-I and RES-II). The ICI is a self-report psychometric instrument which retrospectively assesses ictal consciousness along the dimensions of the level/arousal and contents/awareness. The CSS has been used by clinicians to quantify the impairment of consciousness in order to establish correlations with the brain mechanisms underlying alterations of consciousness during temporal lobe seizures. The most recently developed observer-rated instrument is the RES-I, which has been used to assess responsiveness during epileptic seizures in patients undergoing video-EEG. The implementation of standardized psychometric tools for the assessment of ictal consciousness can complement clinical observations and contribute to improve accuracy in seizure classification.

  5. [An existential-phenomenological approach to consciousness].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langle, A

    2014-01-01

    The human beings are characterized as subjects. Their essence is understood as Person. A treatment which does not consider the subjective and the Person would not correspond their essence. For a feeling and autonomous being, consciousness plays a role but cannot fully correspond the being a person. This has a therapeutic impact on the treatment of unconscious patients and gives the treatment a specific access. Some instructions for the therapeutic application of the phenomenological-existential concept and the phenomenological attitude towards unconscious or brain traumatized patients are given. The role of consciousness for being human is briefly reflected from an existential perspective.

  6. The Quantum Computing Conscious Universe and The Extended Deep Ecology Hypothesis: Implications for Medicine, Agriculture and Technology

    OpenAIRE

    Monendra Grover

    2011-01-01

    The human consciousness has been proposed to have several levels of consciousness, some of which are higher than others. I propose that the universe also has several levels of consciousness. To quantify the states of consciousness I propose the term consciousness vector. I further propose a extended deep ecology hypothesis which states that all human activity, including in the fields of medicine, agriculture and technology should be targeted so as to achieve the highest levels of consciousnes...

  7. How quantum brain biology can rescue conscious free will

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hameroff, Stuart

    2012-01-01

    Conscious “free will” is problematic because (1) brain mechanisms causing consciousness are unknown, (2) measurable brain activity correlating with conscious perception apparently occurs too late for real-time conscious response, consciousness thus being considered “epiphenomenal illusion,” and (3) determinism, i.e., our actions and the world around us seem algorithmic and inevitable. The Penrose–Hameroff theory of “orchestrated objective reduction (Orch OR)” identifies discrete conscious moments with quantum computations in microtubules inside brain neurons, e.g., 40/s in concert with gamma synchrony EEG. Microtubules organize neuronal interiors and regulate synapses. In Orch OR, microtubule quantum computations occur in integration phases in dendrites and cell bodies of integrate-and-fire brain neurons connected and synchronized by gap junctions, allowing entanglement of microtubules among many neurons. Quantum computations in entangled microtubules terminate by Penrose “objective reduction (OR),” a proposal for quantum state reduction and conscious moments linked to fundamental spacetime geometry. Each OR reduction selects microtubule states which can trigger axonal firings, and control behavior. The quantum computations are “orchestrated” by synaptic inputs and memory (thus “Orch OR”). If correct, Orch OR can account for conscious causal agency, resolving problem 1. Regarding problem 2, Orch OR can cause temporal non-locality, sending quantum information backward in classical time, enabling conscious control of behavior. Three lines of evidence for brain backward time effects are presented. Regarding problem 3, Penrose OR (and Orch OR) invokes non-computable influences from information embedded in spacetime geometry, potentially avoiding algorithmic determinism. In summary, Orch OR can account for real-time conscious causal agency, avoiding the need for consciousness to be seen as epiphenomenal illusion. Orch OR can rescue conscious

  8. How quantum brain biology can rescue conscious free will

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stuart eHameroff

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Conscious ‘free will’ is problematic because 1 brain mechanisms causing consciousness are unknown, 2 measurable brain activity correlating with conscious perception apparently occurs too late for real-time conscious response, consciousness thus being considered ‘epiphenomenal illusion’, and 3 determinism, i.e. our actions and the world around us seem algorithmic and inevitable. The Penrose-Hameroff theory of ‘orchestrated objective reduction’ (‘Orch OR’ identifies discrete conscious moments with quantum computations in microtubules inside brain neurons, e.g. 40 per second in concert with gamma synchrony EEG. Microtubules organize neuronal interiors and regulate synapses. In Orch OR, microtubule quantum computations occur in integration phases in dendrites and cell bodies of integrate-and-fire brain neurons connected and synchronized by gap junctions, allowing entanglement of microtubules among many neurons. Quantum computations in entangled microtubules terminate by Penrose ‘objective reduction’ (‘OR’, a proposal for quantum state reduction and conscious moments linked to fundamental spacetime geometry. Each OR reduction selects microtubule states which can trigger axonal firings, and control behavior. The quantum computations are ‘orchestrated’ by synaptic inputs and memory (thus ‘Orch OR’. If correct, Orch OR can account for conscious causal agency, resolving problem 1. Regarding problem 2, Orch OR can cause temporal non-locality, sending quantum information backward in classical time, enabling conscious control of behavior. Three lines of evidence for brain backward time effects are presented. Regarding problem 3 Penrose OR (and Orch OR invoke non-computable influences from information embedded in spacetime geometry, potentially avoiding algorithmic determinism. In summary, Orch OR can account for real-time conscious causal agency, avoiding the need for consciousness to be seen as epiphenomenal illusion. Orch

  9. Efficient Designer Nuclease-Based Homologous Recombination Enables Direct PCR Screening for Footprintless Targeted Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvia Merkert

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Genetic engineering of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs via customized designer nucleases has been shown to be significantly more efficient than conventional gene targeting, but still typically depends on the introduction of additional genetic selection elements. In our study, we demonstrate the efficient nonviral and selection-independent gene targeting in human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs. Our high efficiencies of up to 1.6% of gene-targeted hiPSCs, accompanied by a low background of randomly inserted transgenes, eliminated the need for antibiotic or fluorescence-activated cell sorting selection, and allowed the use of short donor oligonucleotides for footprintless gene editing. Gene-targeted hiPSC clones were established simply by direct PCR screening. This optimized approach allows targeted transgene integration into safe harbor sites for more predictable and robust expression and enables the straightforward generation of disease-corrected, patient-derived iPSC lines for research purposes and, ultimately, for future clinical applications.

  10. Optogenetics enables functional analysis of human embryonic stem cell–derived grafts in a Parkinson’s disease model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinbeck, Julius A; Choi, Se Joon; Mrejeru, Ana; Ganat, Yosif; Deisseroth, Karl; Sulzer, David; Mosharov, Eugene V; Studer, Lorenz

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies have shown evidence of behavioral recovery after transplantation of human pluripotent stem cell (PSC)-derived neural cells in animal models of neurological disease1–4. However, little is known about the mechanisms underlying graft function. Here we use optogenetics to modulate in real time electrophysiological and neurochemical properties of mesencephalic dopaminergic (mesDA) neurons derived from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). In mice that had recovered from lesion-induced Parkinsonian motor deficits, light-induced selective silencing of graft activity rapidly and reversibly re-introduced the motor deficits. The re-introduction of motor deficits was prevented by the dopamine agonist apomorphine. These results suggest that functionality depends on graft neuronal activity and dopamine release. Combining optogenetics, slice electrophysiology and pharmacological approaches, we further show that mesDA-rich grafts modulate host glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto striatal medium spiny neurons in a manner reminiscent of endogenous mesDA neurons. Thus, application of optogenetics in cell therapy can link transplantation, animal behavior and postmortem analysis to enable the identification of mechanisms that drive recovery. PMID:25580598

  11. Optogenetics enables functional analysis of human embryonic stem cell-derived grafts in a Parkinson's disease model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinbeck, Julius A; Choi, Se Joon; Mrejeru, Ana; Ganat, Yosif; Deisseroth, Karl; Sulzer, David; Mosharov, Eugene V; Studer, Lorenz

    2015-02-01

    Recent studies have shown evidence of behavioral recovery after transplantation of human pluripotent stem cell (PSC)-derived neural cells in animal models of neurological disease. However, little is known about the mechanisms underlying graft function. Here we use optogenetics to modulate in real time electrophysiological and neurochemical properties of mesencephalic dopaminergic (mesDA) neurons derived from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). In mice that had recovered from lesion-induced Parkinsonian motor deficits, light-induced selective silencing of graft activity rapidly and reversibly re-introduced the motor deficits. The re-introduction of motor deficits was prevented by the dopamine agonist apomorphine. These results suggest that functionality depends on graft neuronal activity and dopamine release. Combining optogenetics, slice electrophysiology and pharmacological approaches, we further show that mesDA-rich grafts modulate host glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto striatal medium spiny neurons in a manner reminiscent of endogenous mesDA neurons. Thus, application of optogenetics in cell therapy can link transplantation, animal behavior and postmortem analysis to enable the identification of mechanisms that drive recovery.

  12. A novel humanized GLP-1 receptor model enables both affinity purification and Cre-LoxP deletion of the receptor.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucy S Jun

    Full Text Available Class B G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs are important regulators of endocrine physiology, and peptide-based therapeutics targeting some of these receptors have proven effective at treating disorders such as hypercalcemia, osteoporosis, and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM. As next generation efforts attempt to develop novel non-peptide, orally available molecules for these GPCRs, new animal models expressing human receptor orthologs may be required because small molecule ligands make fewer receptor contacts, and thus, the impact of amino acid differences across species may be substantially greater. The objective of this report was to generate and characterize a new mouse model of the human glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor (hGLP-1R, a class B GPCR for which established peptide therapeutics exist for the treatment of T2DM. hGLP-1R knock-in mice express the receptor from the murine Glp-1r locus. Glucose tolerance tests and gastric emptying studies show hGLP-1R mice and their wild-type littermates display similar physiological responses for glucose metabolism, insulin secretion, and gastric transit, and treatment with the GLP-1R agonist, exendin-4, elicits similar responses in both groups. Further, ex vivo assays show insulin secretion from humanized islets is glucose-dependent and enhanced by GLP-1R agonists. To enable additional utility, the targeting construct of the knock-in line was engineered to contain both flanking LoxP sites and a C-terminal FLAG epitope. Anti-FLAG affinity purification shows strong expression of hGLP-1R in islets, lung, and stomach. We crossed the hGLP-1R line with Rosa26Cre mice and generated global Glp-1r-/- animals. Immunohistochemistry of pancreas from humanized and knock-out mice identified a human GLP-1R-specific antibody that detects the GLP-1R in human pancreas as well as in the pancreas of hGLP-1r knock-in mice. This new hGLP-1R model will allow tissue-specific deletion of the GLP-1R, purification of potential

  13. Environmentally conscious patent histories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crouch, Dennis D.; Crouch, Henry L.

    2004-02-01

    There is a need for investigators, legislators, and business leaders to understand the magnitude of innovation and discovery in the field of environmentally conscious technologies (ECTs). Knowledge of the "big picture" is important to providing a national and global account of actual environmental stewardship over the last twenty-five years. A recitation of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) supported Acts which have been enacted into law reveals one facet of the multifaceted dynamic of environmental consciousness. The popular discussion and debate, as well as partisan lobbying, which created the political forces leading to environmentally conscious legislation is another facet. A third facet is the corporate response to the threats and opportunities predicted by CEO"s and others through environmental scanning. This paper examines changes in environmentally conscious inventive effort by comparing data from United States Patents issued from 1976 through 2003. Patents are useful tool for measuring technological innovation because they are publicly available records of innovative activity. Although not all inventions result in patent applications, the monopoly rights granted on the invention give the inventor a strong incentive to obtain patents on any viable product or process. Among the results, we found a significant increase in patents relating to environmentally conscious products and processes during the period in question. Specifically, a dramatic increase in patent activity was seen for the decade of the 1990"s. Surprisingly, the patenting rate from 2000 to 2003 seems to have stabilized. Additionally public discussion of ECTs appears to have a positive impact on patent filings.

  14. Amplifying Phenomenal Information Toward a Fundamental Theory of Consciousness

    CERN Document Server

    Gabora, L

    1999-01-01

    Since an organism eats other living things to survive, it must behave as if it values its own subjective experience more than that of the entities it consumes. Thus assessments about consciousness are inherently warped. This lends credibility to Chalmers' double aspect theory of information, and suggests that the degree of consciousness is a function of the degree to which information is locally amplified. Autocatalytic closure may induce a phase transition in degree of amplification by trapping and integrating information. The effect may be magnified in humans through a second level of closure: distributed memories (attractors) are woven into a conceptual web through the emergence of abstractions (lower-dimensional attractors). Human consciousness is viewed as a temporally self-similar hyperstructure or sequence of phase relations which evolve and are evolved by this conceptual web. The final stages in the proposed transformation from proto-conscious to human conscious involve reflection, focusing, resonance...

  15. Environmental Consciousness, Sustainability, and the Character of Philosophy of Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonnett, Michael

    2017-01-01

    This paper argues that education itself, properly understood, is intimately concerned with an individual's being in the world, and therefore is ineluctably environmental. This is guaranteed by the ecstatic nature of consciousness. Furthermore, it is argued that a central dimension of this environment with which ecstatic human consciousness is…

  16. Consciousness as a definition of death: its appeal and complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machado, C

    1999-10-01

    A new formulation of death proposed in this study is based on the basic physiopathological mechanisms of consciousness generation in human beings. Two physiological components control conscious behavior: arousal and awareness (content of consciousness). We cannot simply differentiate and locate arousal as a function of the ascending reticular activating system and awareness as a function of the cerebral cortex. Substantial interconnections among the brainstem, subcortical structures and the neocortex, are essential for subserving and integrating both components of human consciousness. Therefore, consciousness does not bear a simple one-to-one relationship with higher or lower brain structures, because the physical substratum for consciousness is based on anatomy and physiology throughout the brain. This new account of human death is based on the irreversible loss of consciousness because it provides the key human attributes and the highest level of control in the hierarchy of integrating functions within the organism. The notion of consciousness as the ultimate integrative function is more consistent with the biologically-based systems than the more philosophically-based notions of personhood.

  17. A Neural Marker of Perceptual Consciousness in Infants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kouider, Sid; Stahlhut, Carsten; Gelskov, Sofie V.

    2013-01-01

    Consciousness Arrives Neurophysiological measures in human adults correspond to the transition between very brief, “unnoticeable,” and slightly longer-lived visual stimuli that penetrate deeply enough to leave a conscious imprint that subjects report they can “see.” Kouider et al. (p. 376) have p...

  18. Evolving Complexity, Cognition, and Consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liljenström, H.

    2012-12-01

    All through the history of the universe there is an apparent tendency for increasing complexity, with the organization of matter in evermore elaborate and interactive systems. The living world in general, and the human brain in particular, provides the highest complexity known. It seems obvious that all of this complexity must be the result of physical, chemical and biological evolution, but it was only with Darwin that we began to get a scientific understanding of biological evolution. Darwinian principles are guiding in our understanding of such complex systems as the nervous system, but also for the evolution of human society and technology. Living organisms have to survive in a complex and changing environment. This implies response and adaption to environmental events and changes at several time scales. The interaction with the environment depends on the present state of the organism, as well as on previous experiences stored in its molecular and cellular structures. At a longer time scale, organisms can adapt to slow environmental changes, by storing information in the genetic material carried over from generation to generation. This phylogenetic learning is complemented by ontogenetic learning, which is adaptation at a shorter time scale, occuring in non-genetic structures. The evolution of a nervous system is a major transition in biological evolution and allows for an increasing capacity for information storage and processing, increasing chances of survival. Such neural knowledge processing, cognition, shows the same principal features as nonneural adaptive processes. Similarly, consciousness might appear, to different degrees, at different stages in evolution. Both cognition and consciousness depends critically on the organization and complexity of the organism. In this presentation, I will briefly discuss general principles for evolution of complexity, focussing on the evolution of the nervous system, which provides organisms with ever increasing

  19. Space, self, and the theater of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trehub, Arnold

    2007-06-01

    Over a decade ago, I introduced a large-scale theory of the cognitive brain which explained for the first time how the human brain is able to create internal models of its intimate world and invent models of a wider universe. An essential part of the theoretical model is an organization of neuronal mechanisms which I have named the Retinoid Model [Trehub, A. (1977). Neuronal models for cognitive processes: Networks for learning, perception and imagination. Journal of Theoretical Biology, 65, 141-169; Trehub, A. (1991). The Cognitive Brain: MIT Press]. This hypothesized brain system has structural and dynamic properties enabling it to register and appropriately integrate disparate foveal stimuli into a perspectival, egocentric representation of an extended 3D world scene including a neuronally tokened locus of the self which, in this theory, is the neuronal origin of retinoid space. As an integral part of the larger neuro-cognitive model, the retinoid system is able to perform many other useful perceptual and higher cognitive functions. In this paper, I draw on the hypothesized properties of this system to argue that neuronal activity within the retinoid structure constitutes the phenomenal content of consciousness and the unique sense of self that each of us experiences.

  20. Cajal and consciousness. Introduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marijuán, P C

    2001-04-01

    One hundred years after Santiago Ramón Cajal established the bases of modern neuroscience in his masterpiece Textura del sistema nervioso del hombre y de los vertebrados, the question is stated again: What is the status of consciousness today? The responses in this book, by contemporary leading figures of neuroscience, evolution, molecular biology, computer science, and quantum physics, collectively compose a fascinating conceptual landscape. Both the evolutionary emergence of consciousness and its development towards the highest level may be analyzed by a wealth of new theories and hypotheses, including Cajal's prescient ones. Some noticeable gaps remain, however. Celebrating the centennial of Textura is a timely occasion to reassess how close--and how far--our system of the sciences is to explaining consciousness.

  1. Enabling Future Science and Human Exploration with NASA's Next Generation near Earth and Deep Space Communications and Navigation Architecture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reinhart, Richard C.; Schier, James S.; Israel, David J.; Tai, Wallace; Liebrecht, Philip E.; Townes, Stephen A.

    2017-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is studying alternatives for the United States space communications architecture through the 2040 timeframe. This architecture provides communication and navigation services to both human exploration and science missions throughout the solar system. Several of NASA's key space assets are approaching their end of design life and major systems are in need of replacement. The changes envisioned in the relay satellite architecture and capabilities around both Earth and Mars are significant undertakings and occur only once or twice each generation, and therefore is referred to as NASA's next generation space communications architecture. NASA's next generation architecture will benefit from technology and services developed over recent years. These innovations will provide missions with new operations concepts, increased performance, and new business and operating models. Advancements in optical communications will enable high-speed data channels and the use of new and more complex science instruments. Modern multiple beam/multiple access technologies such as those employed on commercial high throughput satellites will enable enhanced capabilities for on-demand service, and with new protocols will help provide Internet-like connectivity for cooperative spacecraft to improve data return and coordinate joint mission objectives. On-board processing with autonomous and cognitive networking will play larger roles to help manage system complexity. Spacecraft and ground systems will coordinate among themselves to establish communications, negotiate link connectivity, and learn to share spectrum to optimize resource allocation. Spacecraft will autonomously navigate, plan trajectories, and handle off-nominal events. NASA intends to leverage the ever-expanding capabilities of the satellite communications industry and foster its continued growth. NASA's technology development will complement and extend commercial capabilities

  2. Familiar Person Recognition: Is Autonoetic Consciousness More Likely to Accompany Face Recognition Than Voice Recognition?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barsics, Catherine; Brédart, Serge

    2010-11-01

    Autonoetic consciousness is a fundamental property of human memory, enabling us to experience mental time travel, to recollect past events with a feeling of self-involvement, and to project ourselves in the future. Autonoetic consciousness is a characteristic of episodic memory. By contrast, awareness of the past associated with a mere feeling of familiarity or knowing relies on noetic consciousness, depending on semantic memory integrity. Present research was aimed at evaluating whether conscious recollection of episodic memories is more likely to occur following the recognition of a familiar face than following the recognition of a familiar voice. Recall of semantic information (biographical information) was also assessed. Previous studies that investigated the recall of biographical information following person recognition used faces and voices of famous people as stimuli. In this study, the participants were presented with personally familiar people's voices and faces, thus avoiding the presence of identity cues in the spoken extracts and allowing a stricter control of frequency exposure with both types of stimuli (voices and faces). In the present study, the rate of retrieved episodic memories, associated with autonoetic awareness, was significantly higher from familiar faces than familiar voices even though the level of overall recognition was similar for both these stimuli domains. The same pattern was observed regarding semantic information retrieval. These results and their implications for current Interactive Activation and Competition person recognition models are discussed.

  3. [Consciousness and emotion].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carton, Solange

    2007-12-01

    This article focuses on the processes that lead to awareness of our own emotions, which deserve particular attention in contemporary models of emotional consciousness. The subjective component of emotion, or emotional experience, was for a long time the most neglected aspect in the study of emotions although it already constituted the initial point of discussion in the famous William James still asked question : What is an emotion? More than a century later, contemporary theories debate about this heritage. We examine the successive historic contributions to the question of the determinants of our own emotional experience: from James-Lange bodily changes to cognitive appraisal theories, also relating the major role that the fundamental emotions theory attributed to facial expressions. Twenty years after the debate about primacy of cognition or emotion, both physiological-somatic and cognitive components are integrated in contemporary approaches to emotions. However, their respective degree of implication varies according to the different levels of emotional consciousness which are modelized. It is on the last level that present models focus, level that leads to consciousness of our emotional experience, benefiting from the contributions of cognitive neurosciences. Models differ according to the role devoted to neuronal substrates in determining emotional experience, but they converge on the specification of a last level of consciousness, which is the only one that allows the subject to be conscious of emotion as it is experienced (feeling) and that what he is experiencing is an emotion. Then, different models of emotional consciousness account for different varieties of emotion experience and also for various cases of emotions, that is occurrence of emotion with a lack of awareness.

  4. Logical Evaluation of Consciousness: For Incorporating Consciousness into Machine Architecture

    CERN Document Server

    Padhy, C N

    2010-01-01

    Machine Consciousness is the study of consciousness in a biological, philosophical, mathematical and physical perspective and designing a model that can fit into a programmable system architecture. Prime objective of the study is to make the system architecture behave consciously like a biological model does. Present work has developed a feasible definition of consciousness, that characterizes consciousness with four parameters i.e., parasitic, symbiotic, self referral and reproduction. Present work has also developed a biologically inspired consciousness architecture that has following layers: quantum layer, cellular layer, organ layer and behavioral layer and traced the characteristics of consciousness at each layer. Finally, the work has estimated physical and algorithmic architecture to devise a system that can behave consciously.

  5. Perception, Action, and Consciousness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    What is the relationship between perception and action, between an organism and its environment, in explaining consciousness? These are issues at the heart of philosophy of mind and the cognitive sciences. This book explores the relationship between perception and action from a variety of interdi......What is the relationship between perception and action, between an organism and its environment, in explaining consciousness? These are issues at the heart of philosophy of mind and the cognitive sciences. This book explores the relationship between perception and action from a variety...

  6. The birth of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagercrantz, Hugo

    2009-10-01

    Newborn infants fulfil some criteria of being conscious i.e. being aware of the body, the self and the world. They are able to differentiate between self and nonself touch, express emotions and show signs of shared feelings. They process sensory impressions including pain at a cortical level. They remember rhythmic sounds and vowels which they have been exposed to during fetal life. The spontaneous resting activity discovered in the cortex of newborn infants may correspond to what William James called "the stream of consciousness".

  7. Consciousness in the Universe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khalil Chamcham

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available So far we can identify at least three concepts within modern cosmology that bring into debate the question of consciousness in the universe: 1 Fine Tuning; 2 The Anthropic Principle and 3 The Multiverse. This does not exclude the question of the role of observer (i.e. consciousness in cosmology as developed within Quantum Physics: we observe the universe through quanta and any breakthrough in understanding the origin and nature of the universe will come only through a quantum theory of gravity […

  8. Towards an integrative theory of consciousness: part 1 (neurobiological and cognitive models).

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Sousa, Avinash

    2013-01-01

    The study of consciousness is poised today at interesting crossroads. There has been a surge of research into various neurobiological underpinnings of consciousness in the past decade. The present article looks at the theories regarding this complex phenomenon, especially the ones that neurobiology, cognitive neuroscience and cognitive psychology have to offer. We will first discuss the origin and etymology of word consciousness and its usage. Neurobiological correlates of consciousness are discussed with structures like the ascending reticular activating system, the amygdala, the cerebellum, the thalamus, the frontoparietal circuits, the prefrontal cortex and the precuneus. The cellular and microlevel theories of consciousness and cerebral activity at the neuronal level contributing to consciousness are highlighted, along with the various theories posited in this area. The role of neuronal assemblies and circuits along with firing patterns and their ramifications for the understanding of consciousness are discussed. A section on the role of anaesthesia and its links to consciousness is presented, along with details of split-brain studies in consciousness and altered states of awareness, including the vegetative states. The article finally discusses the progress cognitive psychology has made in identifying and theorising various perspectives of consciousness, perceptual awareness and conscious processing. Both recent and past researches are highlighted. The importance and salient features of each theory are discussed along with the pitfalls, if present. A need for integration of various theories to understand consciousness from a holistic perspective is stressed, to enable one to reach a theory that explains the ultimate neurobiology of consciousness.

  9. Towards an integrative theory of consciousness: Part 1 (Neurobiological and cognitive models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Avinash De Sousa

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The study of consciousness is poised today at interesting crossroads. There has been a surge of research into various neurobiological underpinnings of consciousness in the past decade. The present article looks at the theories regarding this complex phenomenon, especially the ones that neurobiology, cognitive neuroscience and cognitive psychology have to offer. We will first discuss the origin and etymology of word consciousness and its usage. Neurobiological correlates of consciousness are discussed with structures like the ascending reticular activating system, the amygdala, the cerebellum, the thalamus, the frontoparietal circuits, the prefrontal cortex and the precuneus. The cellular and microlevel theories of consciousness and cerebral activity at the neuronal level contributing to consciousness are highlighted, along with the various theories posited in this area. The role of neuronal assemblies and circuits along with firing patterns and their ramifications for the understanding of consciousness are discussed. A section on the role of anaesthesia and its links to consciousness is presented, along with details of split-brain studies in consciousness and altered states of awareness, including the vegetative states. The article finally discusses the progress cognitive psychology has made in identifying and theorising various perspectives of consciousness, perceptual awareness and conscious processing. Both recent and past researches are highlighted. The importance and salient features of each theory are discussed along with the pitfalls, if present. A need for integration of various theories to understand consciousness from a holistic perspective is stressed, to enable one to reach a theory that explains the ultimate neurobiology of consciousness.

  10. Morphology enabled dipole inversion (MEDI) from a single-angle acquisition: comparison with COSMOS in human brain imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Tian; Liu, Jing; de Rochefort, Ludovic; Spincemaille, Pascal; Khalidov, Ildar; Ledoux, James Robert; Wang, Yi

    2011-09-01

    Magnetic susceptibility varies among brain structures and provides insights into the chemical and molecular composition of brain tissues. However, the determination of an arbitrary susceptibility distribution from the measured MR signal phase is a challenging, ill-conditioned inverse problem. Although a previous method named calculation of susceptibility through multiple orientation sampling (COSMOS) has solved this inverse problem both theoretically and experimentally using multiple angle acquisitions, it is often impractical to carry out on human subjects. Recently, the feasibility of calculating the brain susceptibility distribution from a single-angle acquisition was demonstrated using morphology enabled dipole inversion (MEDI). In this study, we further improved the original MEDI method by sparsifying the edges in the quantitative susceptibility map that do not have a corresponding edge in the magnitude image. Quantitative susceptibility maps generated by the improved MEDI were compared qualitatively and quantitatively with those generated by calculation of susceptibility through multiple orientation sampling. The results show a high degree of agreement between MEDI and calculation of susceptibility through multiple orientation sampling, and the practicality of MEDI allows many potential clinical applications.

  11. 身体性的“此在”——论穆旦诗歌的身体意识%“Existing” of Human Body——On the Body Consciousness in Mu Dan' s Poems

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘纪新

    2012-01-01

    穆旦笔下的身体意识最早出现在《野兽》一诗中,此后,身体与穆旦的创作主题融合,成为揭示“此在”真实境遇的一种角度,通过身体揭示孤独、虚无的真实处境。不仅如此,穆旦还将这种身体意识推广到大自然之中,营造一个欲望燃烧的大自然。最终,由于不堪虚无的折磨,他把身体推上了神坛,不过,这只是一次短暂的精神慰藉。%The consciousness of human body can be traced back to Mu Dan's poem Beast. From then on, body consciousness blends with the theme of Mu Dan's poems, serving as device to show the concreteness of “Existing” so as to reveal the reality of body' s loneliness and nothingness. Moreover, Mu Dan spread such a body consciousness to the whole nature, creating a world of fiery desire. As a result, being unable to endure the suffering from nothingness, he put the body on a pedestal, which, however, is merely a temporary mental relief.

  12. The Unconscious, Self-consciousness, and Responsibility

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Massimo Marraffa

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available In this article I argue that (1 introspective self-consciousness is an activity of narrative re-appropriation of the products of the cognitive unconscious; and (2 this activity has an essentially self-defensive character, being ruled by the primary and universal need to construct and protect a subjective identity whose solidity is the ground of the intrapsychic and interpersonal balances of human organism. Finally, in this framework firmly based on psychological sciences, I reconsider John Locke’s link between responsibility and self-consciousness.

  13. Chronic disorders of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Qiuyou; Ni, Xiaoxiao; Yu, Ronghao; Li, Yuanqing; Huang, Ruiwang

    2017-08-01

    Over the last 20 years, studies have provided greater insight into disorders of consciousness (DOC), also known as altered state of consciousness. Increased brain residual functions have been identified in patients with DOC due to the successful application of novel next-generation imaging technologies. Many unconscious patients have now been confirmed to retain considerable cognitive functions. It is hoped that greater insight regarding the psychological state of patients may be achieved through the use of functional magnetic resonance imaging and brain-computer interfaces. However, issues surrounding the research and treatment of DOC remain problematic. These include differing opinions on the definition of consciousness, difficulties in diagnosis, assessment, prognosis and/or treatment, and newly emerging ethical, legal and social issues. To overcome these, appropriate care must be offered to patients with DOC by clinicians and families, as DOC patients may now be considered to live in more than just a vegetative state. The present article reviews the controversy surrounding the definition of consciousness and the reliability of novel technologies, prognostic prediction, communication with DOC patients and treatment methods. The ethical and social issues surrounding the treatment of DOC and future perspectives are also considered.

  14. Cybernetics and consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trabka, J

    1999-01-01

    This paper is a review of hypotheses of consciousness which arose from application of the theory of information and regulation and the cybernetic theory of mathematical machines in medicine. The author presents these hypotheses on the examples of his own works.

  15. Consciousness and biological evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindahl, B I

    1997-08-21

    It has been suggested that if the preservation and development of consciousness in the biological evolution is a result of natural selection, it is plausible that consciousness not only has been influenced by neural processes, but has had a survival value itself; and it could only have had this, if it had also been efficacious. This argument for mind-brain interaction is examined, both as the argument has been developed by William James and Karl Popper and as it has been discussed by C.D. Broad. The problem of identifying mental phenomena with certain neural phenomena is also addressed. The main conclusion of the analysis is that an explanation of the evolution of consciousness in Darwinian terms of natural selection does not rule out that consciousness may have evolved as a mere causally inert effect of the evolution of the nervous system, or that mental phenomena are identical with certain neural phenomena. However, the interactionistic theory still seems, more plausible and more fruitful for other reasons brought up in the discussion.

  16. Consciousness and the Brainstem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parvizi, Josef; Damasio, Antonio

    2001-01-01

    Summarizes a theoretical framework and set of hypotheses aimed at accounting for consciousness in neurobiological terms. Discusses the functional neuroanatomy of nuclei in the brainstem reticular formation. Notes that the views presented are compatible with the idea that the reticular formation modulates the electrophysiological activity of the…

  17. The mystery of consciousness

    CERN Document Server

    Searle, John R

    1997-01-01

    It has long been one of the most fundamental problems of philosophy, and it is now, John Searle writes, "the most important problem in the biological sciences": What is consciousness? Is my inner awareness of myself something separate from my body? In what began as a series of essays in The New York Review of Books, John Searle evaluates the positions on consciousness of such well-known scientists and philosophers as Francis Crick, Gerald Edelman, Roger Penrose, Daniel Dennett, David Chalmers, and Israel Rosenfield. He challenges claims that the mind works like a computer, and that brain functions can be reproduced by computer programs. With a sharp eye for confusion and contradiction, he points out which avenues of current research are most likely to come up with a biological examination of how conscious states are caused by the brain. Only when we understand how the brain works will we solve the mystery of consciousness, and only then will we begin to understand issues ranging from artificial intelligence...

  18. The emergence of consciousness: Science and ethics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagercrantz, Hugo

    2014-10-01

    The newborn human infant is conscious at a minimal level. It is aware of its body, itself and to some extent of the outside world. It recognizes faces and vowels to which it has been exposed. It expresses emotions like joy. Functional magnetic resonance imaging of the newborn brain shows highest activity in the somatosensory, auditory, and visual cortex but less activity in association area and the prefrontal cortex as compared with adults. There is an incomplete default mode network which is assumed to be related to consciousness. Although the fetus reacts to pain, maternal speaking, etc., it is probably not aware of this due to the low oxygen level and sedation. Assuming that consciousness is mainly localized in the cortex, consciousness cannot emerge before 24 gestational weeks when the thalamocortical connections from the sense organs are established. Thus the limit of legal abortion at 22-24 weeks in many countries makes sense. It should also be possible to withdraw or withhold life-saving therapy of extremely preterm infants, especially if they are severely brain-damaged. This may also apply to full-term infants with grade III hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, who show no signs of consciousness.

  19. Taming power: Generative historical consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, David G

    2016-04-01

    Power is a necessary dimension of all human enterprises. It can inspire and illuminate, but it can also corrupt, oppress, and destroy. Therefore, taming power has been a central moral and political question for most of human history. Writers, theorists, and researchers have suggested many methods and mechanisms for taming power: through affiliation and love, intellect and reason, responsibility, religion and values, democratic political structures, and separation of powers. Historical examples and social science research suggest that each has some success, but also that each is vulnerable to being hijacked by power itself. I therefore introduce generative historical consciousness (GHC) as a concept and measure that might help to secure the benefits of power while protecting against its outrages and excesses. I conclude by discussing the role that GHC may have played in the peaceful resolution of the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962.

  20. Self-Consciousness and Reactance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carver, Charles S.; Scheier, Michael F.

    1981-01-01

    Two studies examined the effects of dispositional self-consciousness on reactance. Men who were high in private self-consciousness displayed greater reactance responses to a coercive communication attempt. Women high in private self-consciousness exhibited greater reactance responses to a self-imposed threat to their freedom of choice. (Author)

  1. The minimally conscious state: defining the borders of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giacino, J T

    2005-01-01

    There is no agreement as to where the limits of consciousness lie, or even if these putative borders exist. Problems inherent to the study of consciousness continue to confound efforts to establish a universally accepted theory of consciousness. Consequently, clinical definitions of consciousness and unconsciousness are unavoidably arbitrary. Recently, a condition of severely altered consciousness has been described, which characterizes the borderzone between the vegetative state and so-called "normal" consciousness. This condition, referred to as the minimally conscious state (MCS), is distinguished from the vegetative state by the presence of minimal but clearly discernible behavioral evidence of self or environmental awareness. This chapter reviews the diagnostic criteria, pathophysiology, prognostic relevance, neurobehavioral assessment procedures and treatment implications associated with MCS.

  2. Coherence in consciousness: paralimbic gamma synchrony of self-reference links conscious experiences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lou, Hans C; Gross, Joachim; Biermann-Ruben, Katja; Kjaer, Troels W; Schnitzler, Alfons

    2010-02-01

    A coherent and meaningful percept of the world is essential for human nature. Consequently, much speculation has focused on how this is achieved in the brain. It is thought that all conscious experiences have reference to the self. Self-reference may either be minimal or extended, i.e., autonoetic. In minimal self-reference subjective experiences are self-aware in the weak sense that there is something it feels like for the subject to experience something. In autonoetic consciousness, consciousness emerges, by definition, by retrieval of memories of personally experienced events (episodic memory). It has been shown with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) that a medial paralimbic circuitry is critical for self-reference. This circuitry includes anterior cingulate/medial prefrontal and posterior cingulate/medial parietal cortices, connected directly and via thalamus. We here hypothesized that interaction in the circuitry may bind conscious experiences with widely different degrees of self-reference through synchrony of high frequency oscillations as a common neural event. This hypothesis was confirmed with magneto-encephalography (MEG). The observed coupling between the neural events in conscious experience may explain the sense of unity of consciousness and the severe symptoms associated with paralimbic dysfunction.

  3. [Functional pathophysiology of consciousness].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jellinger, Kurt A

    2009-01-01

    Consciousness (Latin conscientia "moral conscience"), according to the English philosopher John Locke (1632-1704) [103], is the awareness of all that occurs in the mind of a person, whereas the American philosopher John Searle (2000) defined it as "inner qualitative, subjective states and processes of awareness". In modern science it is defined as a continuous state of full awareness of the Self and one's relationship to the external and internal environment, describing the degree of wakefulness in which an organism recognizes stimuli. This widely discussed biological term for complex neuronal processes that allow an individuum to recognize itself and its environment and to act accordingly, has been and still is the subject of much research in philosophy and natural/neuroscience. Its definition is often used for awareness and recognition, too. While the Egyptians in the papyrus Edwin Smith already recognized the brain as the seat of consciousness, René Descartes (1644 [36]) believed its special structure should be "a small gland in the middle", but the anatomical structures and physiological processes involved in consciousness were elucidated only in the middle of the 20th century. Neuronal substrates include several functional networks that are hierarchically organized and cooperate functionally. The lowest level is the mesencephalic formatio reticularis and its projections to the thalamus that were identified als ascending reticular system (ARAS) by the classical experiments of Moruzzi and Magoun, whereas later analyses of patients with impaired consciousness provided further insights. The mesencephalic ARAS as motor of the function of higher structures projects 1. via the reticular thalamus diffusely to the cortex, 2. via hypothalamus to the basal forebrain and limbic system, and 3. to the medial raphe of the brainstem and locus coeruleus and their diffuse cortical projections. The reticular system is stimulated directly and indirectly via numerous collaterals

  4. On the character of consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arto eAnnila

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The human brain is a particularly demanding system to infer its nature from observations. Thus, there is on one hand plenty of room for theorizing and on the other hand a pressing need for a rigorous theory. We apply statistical mechanics of open systems to describe the brain as a hierarchical system in consuming free energy in least time. This holistic tenet accounts for cellular metabolism, neuronal signaling, cognitive processes all together or any other process by a formal equation of motion that extends down to the ultimate precision of one quantum of action. According to this general thermodynamic theory cognitive processes are no different by their operational and organizational principle from other natural processes. Cognition too will emerge and evolve along path-dependent and non-determinate trajectories by consuming free energy in least time to attain thermodynamic balance within the nervous system itself and with its surrounding systems. Specifically, consciousness can be ascribed to a natural process that integrates various neural networks for coherent consumption of free energy, i.e., for meaningful deeds. The whole hierarchy of integrated systems can be formally summed up to thermodynamic entropy. The holistic tenet provides insight to the character of consciousness also by acknowledging awareness in other systems at other levels of nature’s hierarchy.

  5. Evolutionary aspects of self- and world consciousness in vertebrates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franco eFabbro

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Although most aspects of world and self-consciousness are inherently subjective, neuroscience studies in humans and non-human animals provide correlational and causative indices of specific links between brain activity and representation of the self and the world. In this article we review neuroanatomic, neurophysiological and neuropsychological data supporting the hypothesis that different levels of self and world representation in vertebrates rely upon i a 'basal' subcortical system that includes brainstem, hypothalamus and central thalamic nuclei and that may underpin the primary (or anoetic consciousness likely present in all vertebrates; and ii a forebrain system that include the medial and lateral structures of the cerebral hemispheres and may sustain the most sophisticated forms of consciousness (e.g. noetic (knowledge based and autonoetic, reflective knowledge. We posit a mutual, bidirectional functional influence between these two major brain circuits. We conclude that basic aspects of consciousness like primary self and core self (based on anoetic and noetic consciousness are present in many species of vertebrates and that, even self-consciousness (autonoetic consciousness does not seem to be a prerogative of humans and of some non-human primates but may, to a certain extent, be present in some other mammals and birds

  6. Evolutionary aspects of self- and world consciousness in vertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fabbro, Franco; Aglioti, Salvatore M; Bergamasco, Massimo; Clarici, Andrea; Panksepp, Jaak

    2015-01-01

    Although most aspects of world and self-consciousness are inherently subjective, neuroscience studies in humans and non-human animals provide correlational and causative indices of specific links between brain activity and representation of the self and the world. In this article we review neuroanatomic, neurophysiological and neuropsychological data supporting the hypothesis that different levels of self and world representation in vertebrates rely upon (i) a "basal" subcortical system that includes brainstem, hypothalamus and central thalamic nuclei and that may underpin the primary (or anoetic) consciousness likely present in all vertebrates; and (ii) a forebrain system that include the medial and lateral structures of the cerebral hemispheres and may sustain the most sophisticated forms of consciousness [e.g., noetic (knowledge based) and autonoetic, reflective knowledge]. We posit a mutual, bidirectional functional influence between these two major brain circuits. We conclude that basic aspects of consciousness like primary self and core self (based on anoetic and noetic consciousness) are present in many species of vertebrates and that, even self-consciousness (autonoetic consciousness) does not seem to be a prerogative of humans and of some non-human primates but may, to a certain extent, be present in some other mammals and birds.

  7. Are There Levels of Consciousness?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bayne, Tim; Hohwy, Jakob; Owen, Adrian M

    2016-06-01

    The notion of a level of consciousness is a key construct in the science of consciousness. Not only is the term employed to describe the global states of consciousness that are associated with post-comatose disorders, epileptic absence seizures, anaesthesia, and sleep, it plays an increasingly influential role in theoretical and methodological contexts. However, it is far from clear what precisely a level of consciousness is supposed to be. This paper argues that the levels-based framework for conceptualizing global states of consciousness is untenable and develops in its place a multidimensional account of global states. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  8. Perception, Action, and Consciousness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    What is the relationship between perception and action, between an organism and its environment, in explaining consciousness? These are issues at the heart of philosophy of mind and the cognitive sciences. This book explores the relationship between perception and action from a variety of interdi......What is the relationship between perception and action, between an organism and its environment, in explaining consciousness? These are issues at the heart of philosophy of mind and the cognitive sciences. This book explores the relationship between perception and action from a variety...... of interdisciplinary perspectives, ranging from theoretical discussion of concepts to findings from recent scientific studies. It incorporates contributions from leading philosophers, psychologists, neuroscientists, and an artificial intelligence theorist. The contributions take a range of positions with respect...

  9. Social Interactions Receive Priority to Conscious Perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Junzhu; van Boxtel, Jeroen J A; Lu, Hongjing

    2016-01-01

    Humans are social animals, constantly engaged with other people. The importance of social thought and action is hard to overstate. However, is social information so important that it actually determines which stimuli are promoted to conscious experience and which stimuli are suppressed as invisible? To address this question, we used a binocular rivalry paradigm, in which the two eyes receive different action stimuli. In two experiments we measured the conscious percept of rival actions and found that actions engaged in social interactions are granted preferential access to visual awareness over non-interactive actions. Lastly, an attentional task that presumably engaged the mentalizing system enhanced the priority assigned to social interactions in reaching conscious perception. We also found a positive correlation between human identification of interactive activity and the promotion of socially-relevant information to visual awareness. The present findings suggest that the visual system amplifies socially-relevant sensory information and actively promotes it to consciousness, thereby facilitating inferences about social interactions.

  10. The Impaired Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Docu Any Axelerad

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The ”persistent vegetative state” (PVS has the main attention for us in identifying the examples of consciousness that suffer structural injury. PVS is a state that the patient has the ability to open eyes spontaneously, but without responses to threat, verbalization or other pain defend. Several factors that lead to such state, among which the use of drugs is mostly researched, prolong impaired consciousness as a clinical and personal judgment of this condition. The patients with comatose from a destructive structural injury never regain the conscious state due to widespread structural damage. Any clinical review on this is based on bodily changes observation with impact on the clinical diagnosis of prolonged comatose states as largely descriptive. Eye movements need the most attention because its response to approaching objects distinguishes between a PVS (inconsistent or absent, akinetic mutism (no stacking but spontaneous focusing on moving targets, and MCS (always present. Distinguish between this three conditions needs an interdisciplinary intervention (neurologist or rehabilitation physicians.

  11. A Heuristic Model of Consciousness with Applications to the Development of Science and Society

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter A. Curreri

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available A working model of consciousness is fundamental to understanding of the interactions of the observer in science. This paper examines contemporary understanding of consciousness. A heuristic model of consciousness is suggested that is consistent with psycophysics measurements of bandwidth of consciousness relative to unconscious perception. While the self reference nature of consciousness confers a survival benefit by assuring the all points of view regarding a problem are experienced in sufficiently large population, conscious bandwidth is constrained by design to avoid chaotic behavior. The multiple hypotheses provided by conscious reflection enable the rapid progression of science and technology. The questions of free will and the problem of attention are discussed in relation to the model. Finally the combination of rapid technology growth with the assurance of many unpredictable points of view is considered in respect to contemporary constraints to the development of society.

  12. A Heuristic Model of Consciousness with Applications to the Development of Science and Society

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curreri, Peter A.

    2010-01-01

    A working model of consciousness is fundamental to understanding of the interactions of the observer in science. This paper examines contemporary understanding of consciousness. A heuristic model of consciousness is suggested that is consistent with psycophysics measurements of bandwidth of consciousness relative to unconscious perception. While the self reference nature of consciousness confers a survival benefit by assuring the all points of view regarding a problem are experienced in sufficiently large population, conscious bandwidth is constrained by design to avoid chaotic behavior. The multiple hypotheses provided by conscious reflection enable the rapid progression of science and technology. The questions of free will and the problem of attention are discussed in relation to the model. Finally the combination of rapid technology growth with the assurance of many unpredictable points of view is considered in respect to contemporary constraints to the development of society.

  13. Affective intentionality and self-consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slaby, Jan; Stephan, Achim

    2008-06-01

    We elaborate and defend the claim that human affective states ("feelings") are, among other things, self-disclosing. We will show why affective intentionality has to be considered in order to understand human self-consciousness. One specific class of affective states, so-called existential feelings, although often neglected in philosophical treatments of emotions, will prove central. These feelings importantly pre-structure affective and other intentional relations to the world. Our main thesis is that existential feelings are an important manifestation of self-consciousness and figure prominently in human self-understanding. We offer an ordering of four levels of existential feelings and also give considerations in favour of the essential bodily nature of these feelings.

  14. General Markers of Conscious Visual Perception and Their Timing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutiku, Renate; Aru, Jaan; Bachmann, Talis

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies have observed different onset times for the neural markers of conscious perception. This variability could be attributed to procedural differences between studies. Here we show that the onset times for the markers of conscious visual perception can strongly vary even within a single study. A heterogeneous stimulus set was presented at threshold contrast. Trials with and without conscious perception were contrasted on 100 balanced subsets of the data. Importantly, the 100 subsets with heterogeneous stimuli did not differ in stimulus content, but only with regard to specific trials used. This approach enabled us to study general markers of conscious visual perception independent of stimulus content, characterize their onset and its variability within one study. N200 and P300 were the two reliable markers of conscious visual perception common to all perceived stimuli and absent for all non-perceived stimuli. The estimated mean onset latency for both markers was shortly after 200 ms. However, the onset latency of these markers was associated with considerable variability depending on which subsets of the data were considered. We show that it is first and foremost the amplitude fluctuation in the condition without conscious perception that explains the observed variability in onset latencies of the markers of conscious visual perception.

  15. Parabens can enable hallmarks and characteristics of cancer in human breast epithelial cells: a review of the literature with reference to new exposure data and regulatory status.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darbre, Philippa D; Harvey, Philip W

    2014-09-01

    A framework for understanding the complexity of cancer development was established by Hanahan and Weinberg in their definition of the hallmarks of cancer. In this review, we consider the evidence that parabens can enable development in human breast epithelial cells of four of six of the basic hallmarks, one of two of the emerging hallmarks and one of two of the enabling characteristics. In Hallmark 1, parabens have been measured as present in 99% of human breast tissue samples, possess oestrogenic activity and can stimulate sustained proliferation of human breast cancer cells at concentrations measurable in the breast. In Hallmark 2, parabens can inhibit the suppression of breast cancer cell growth by hydroxytamoxifen, and through binding to the oestrogen-related receptor gamma may prevent its deactivation by growth inhibitors. In Hallmark 3, in the 10 nm-1 μm range, parabens give a dose-dependent evasion of apoptosis in high-risk donor breast epithelial cells. In Hallmark 4, long-term exposure (>20 weeks) to parabens leads to increased migratory and invasive activity in human breast cancer cells, properties that are linked to the metastatic process. As an emerging hallmark methylparaben has been shown in human breast epithelial cells to increase mTOR, a key regulator of energy metabolism. As an enabling characteristic parabens can cause DNA damage at high concentrations in the short term but more work is needed to investigate long-term, low-dose mixtures. The ability of parabens to enable multiple cancer hallmarks in human breast epithelial cells provides grounds for regulatory review of the implications of the presence of parabens in human breast tissue. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  16. Neurodynamics of Cognition and Consciousness

    CERN Document Server

    Perlovsky, Leonid I

    2007-01-01

    This book addresses dynamical aspects of brain functions and cognition. Experimental evidence in humans and other mammalians indicates that complex neurodynamics is crucial for the emergence of higher-level cognition and consciousness. Dynamical neural systems with encoding in limit cycle and non-convergent attractors have gained increasing popularity in the past decade. The role of synchronization, desynchronization, and intermittent synchronization on cognition has been studied extensively by various authors, in particular by authors contributing to the present volume. This volume gives an overview of recent advances in this interdisciplinary field of cognitive and computer science related to dynamics of cognition, including experimental studies, dynamical modelling and interpretation of cognitive experiments, and theoretical approaches. The following topics are covered in this book: spatio-temporal dynamics of neural correlates of higher-level cognition; dynamical neural memories, including continuous and ...

  17. [Correlations of consciousness and the default function of the brain].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gyulaházi, Judit; Varga, Katalin

    2014-01-30

    Neural correlation with consciousness represents a main topic of neuroscience studies. New results of consciousness researches proved that based on a coherent function in between its components the default mode network activity is the condition for awake consciousness. The subject of consciousness is self. Tasks related with the self were proving a high default mode network activity. Using connections inside the network, results which were related with self, could be considered to represent a polymodal integration system are they are participating in fine processing of the highly integrated associative information. It could be a result of the convergence of cognitive binding. There is a strong connection between the level of consciousness and praecuneal activation. It was proved that the network activity is changing during sleeping (normal condition), trauma or under drug induced altered consciousness. The default network activity can be considered as the neural correlate of consciousness. Further researches are warranted to answer the question: is the activity of the network the cause or is just accompanying the development of human consciousness?

  18. [Self-consciousness, consciousness of the other and dementias].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gil, Roger

    2007-06-01

    Studies of self-consciousness in dementia concern essentially anosognosia or the loss of insight. However, Self-consciousness is multifaceted: it includes awareness of the body, perceptions, one's own history, identity, and one's own projects. Self-consciousness is linked to consciousness of others i.e. to social cognition supported by identification of others, but also by comprehension of facial expression of emotions, comprehension and expression of emotional prosody, pragmatic abilities, ability to infer other's people's mental states, thoughts, and feelings (theory of mind and empathy), knowledge of social norms and rules, social reasoning. The subtypes of dementias (and namely Alzheimer's disease and frontotemporal dementia) affect heterogeneously the different aspects of the self-and other-consciousness. Further studies are needed for a better knowledge of the complex relationship between Self-consciousness, social cognition, decision making and neuropsychiatric symptoms and behavioral disturbances occurring in demented patients.

  19. Are we explaining consciousness yet?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dennett, D

    2001-04-01

    Theorists are converging from quite different quarters on a version of the global neuronal workspace model of consciousness, but there are residual confusions to be dissolved. In particular, theorists must resist the temptation to see global accessibility as the cause of consciousness (as if consciousness were some other, further condition); rather, it is consciousness. A useful metaphor for keeping this elusive idea in focus is that consciousness is rather like fame in the brain. It is not a privileged medium of representation, or an added property some states have; it is the very mutual accessibility that gives some informational states the powers that come with a subject's consciousness of that information. Like fame, consciousness is not a momentary condition, or a purely dispositional state, but rather a matter of actual influence over time. Theorists who take on the task of accounting for the aftermath that is critical for consciousness often appear to be leaving out the Subject of consciousness, when in fact they are providing an analysis of the Subject, a necessary component in any serious theory of consciousness.

  20. The biological function of consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Earl, Brian

    2014-01-01

    This research is an investigation of whether consciousness—one's ongoing experience—influences one's behavior and, if so, how. Analysis of the components, structure, properties, and temporal sequences of consciousness has established that, (1) contrary to one's intuitive understanding, consciousness does not have an active, executive role in determining behavior; (2) consciousness does have a biological function; and (3) consciousness is solely information in various forms. Consciousness is associated with a flexible response mechanism (FRM) for decision-making, planning, and generally responding in nonautomatic ways. The FRM generates responses by manipulating information and, to function effectively, its data input must be restricted to task-relevant information. The properties of consciousness correspond to the various input requirements of the FRM; and when important information is missing from consciousness, functions of the FRM are adversely affected; both of which indicate that consciousness is the input data to the FRM. Qualitative and quantitative information (shape, size, location, etc.) are incorporated into the input data by a qualia array of colors, sounds, and so on, which makes the input conscious. This view of the biological function of consciousness provides an explanation why we have experiences; why we have emotional and other feelings, and why their loss is associated with poor decision-making; why blindsight patients do not spontaneously initiate responses to events in their blind field; why counter-habitual actions are only possible when the intended action is in mind; and the reason for inattentional blindness. PMID:25140159

  1. A Proposal of Consciousness as Both a Fundamental and Emergent Property of the Universe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grandy, John

    The relationship that exits between interactions-complexity-consciousness (ICC) can be applied to degrees of consciousness at the smaller scales, e.g., as atoms and to degrees of consciousness at larger scales, e.g., the human brain. In this work I propose that the interactions obey the triadic dimensional vortical paradigm (TDVP) in where time, space, and consciousness are tethered from the origin point. As these interactions increase they ascend complexity at different scales and as the interaction-complexity value increases they give rise to higher degrees of consciousness. The higher degrees of consciousness can be feedback through the original process of the ICC-TDVP to give rise to even higher degrees of consciousness. This can be repeated an infinite number of occurrences in space and time. In this proposal the evolution of degrees of consciousness can be seen as a detailed self-replicating pattern which may be nearly the same at different emerging scales. Eventually, reset points or universal rewrite events occur, which is seen possibly at the level of DNA consciousness, cellular consciousness, and human consciousness. This theoretical work focuses on the development of a paradigm that interprets consciousness as both a fundamental and an emerging property.

  2. Philosophy Iceberg of the Universe Consciousness Energy (The Theory of the Universe Consciousness Energy Expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Georgii Chuzhyk

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available We offer an evolutionary and alternative solution to the problem of the Universe. The theory involves the formation of the Universe by means of all the sequences of energies and energy of consciousness with gradual structural wrapping by energy shells recording and accumulating them; formation of the core dispatch centers performing energetic and informational communication with a single rhythm among all space objects that form civilizations. We outline a way of human consciousness formation. The theory explains how the first objectively appeared sparks of human consciousness energy were evolving, accumulating and being recorded, formed the Earth’s noosphere in its core dispatch center. The consciousness energy structure has not yet been discovered and that inhibits the science, which is wary of those who define it as a stream of multi-super large reflection objectively reflecting the highest degree of manifestation of civilization collective creativity, named by John Wheeler as a substance of the information — “It from Bit.” Core dispatching centers of all cosmic objects consciousness energies such as the Earth are combined into the Universe core dispatcher center of which called the Cosmic Consciousness. Many hundreds of billions of years the Cosmic Consciousness absorbed and only recorded the sequences, experience of which ended strictly following the laws of nature, formed a unique quality — for each new sequence by its energetic and informational signal it can highlight, express from its archive the evolution of similar Roadmap, which had been already passed by a similar sequence. The Cosmic Consciousness indirectly provides the most important thing in the Universe — not interfering, it retains all its evolutionary integrity and harmony. All of them constantly and continuously follow and check it through bioinformational communication, without deviation move toward their goal. Life of the Earth civilization is also moving

  3. Postmodern personhood: a matter of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rich, Ben A

    1997-01-01

    The concept of person is integral to bioethical discourse because persons are the proper subject of the moral domain. Nevertheless, the concept of person has played no role in the prevailing formulation of human death because of a purported lack of consensus concerning the essential attributes of a person. Beginning with John Locke's fundamental proposition that person is a 'forensic term', I argue that in Western society we do have a consensus on at least one necessary condition for personhood, and that is the capacity for conscious experience. When we consider the whole brain formulation of death, and the most prominent defense of it by the President's Commission for the Study of Ethical Problems in Medicine and Biomedical and Behavioral Research, we can readily identify the flaws that grow out of the failure to define human death as the permanent loss of the capacity for conscious experience. Most fundamental among these flaws is a definition of human death that reduces persons to the capacity of the brain to regulate purely physiological functioning. Such a formulation would, in theory, apply to any member of the animal kingdom. I suggest that an appropriate concept of death should capture what it is about a particular living being that is so essential to it that the permanent loss of that thing constitutes death. What is essential to being a human being is living the life of a person, which derives from the capacity for conscious experience.

  4. LEGAL CONSCIOUSNESS AND LEGAL CULTURE

    OpenAIRE

    BOSHNO SVETLANA

    2016-01-01

    This chapter of the course manual in jurisprudence discloses the notion of legal consciousness. Comprehending law, legislation, principal state and legal institutes manifests itself in law enforcement. One shouldn't absolutize the role of legislation as it is, since it is only after texts of normative acts go through the prism of legal consciousness of the actor's personality, they convert into some behaviour patterns. Legal consciousness has a definite structure, it is divided into levels. L...

  5. Strategies for measuring machine consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    2009-01-01

    The accurate measurement of the level of consciousness of a creature remains a major scientific challenge, nevertheless a number of new accounts that attempt to address this problem have been proposed recently. In this paper we analyze the principles of these new measures of consciousness along with other classical approaches focusing on their applicability to Machine Consciousness (MC). Furthermore, we propose a set of requirements of what we think a suitable measure for MC should be, discus...

  6. Environment Conscious Ceramics (Ecoceramics)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Mrityunjay; Levine, Stanley R. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    Environment conscious ceramics (Ecoceramics) are a new class of materials, which can be produced with renewable natural resources (wood) or wood wastes (wood sawdust). Silicon carbide-based ecoceramics have been fabricated by reactive infiltration of carbonaceous preforms by molten silicon or silicon-refractory metal alloys. These carbonaceous preforms have been fabricated by pyrolysis of solid wood bodies at 1000 C. The fabrication approach, microstructure, and mechanical properties of SiC-based ecoceramics are presented. Ecoceramics have tailorable properties and behave like ceramic materials manufactured by conventional approaches.

  7. Behavioral Methods in Consciousness Research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    that the research literature has expanded greatly, particularly in cognitive neuroscience and cognitive science. Interestingly, this scientific work has made use of a wide variety of different methods without much consensus on how one might in fact measure subjective consciousness. This situation makes...... it potentially impossible to compare and contrast experimental findings, and difficult to show that consciousness research is a discipline going in a particular direction or has a particular focus. This book provides an overview of methods and approaches for studying consciousness. It aims to make progress...... giving concrete tools for how to investigate consciousness in combination with theoretical discussions of possibilities and limitations of each method...

  8. Basic consciousness of the newborn.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagercrantz, Hugo; Changeux, Jean-Pierre

    2010-06-01

    The newborn shows several signs of consciousness, such as being awake and aware of him/herself and mother. The infant processes olfactory and painful inputs in the cortex, where consciousness is believed to be localized. Furthermore, the newborn expresses primary emotions such as joy, disgust, and surprise and remember rhymes and vowels to which he or she has been exposed during fetal life. Thus, the newborn infant fulfills the criteria of displaying a basic level of consciousness, being aware of its body and him/her-self and somewhat about the external world. Preterm infants may be conscious to a limited degree from about 25 weeks, when the thalamocortical connections are established.

  9. Memory, autonoetic consciousness, and the self.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markowitsch, Hans J; Staniloiu, Angelica

    2011-03-01

    Memory is a general attribute of living species, whose diversification reflects both evolutionary and developmental processes. Episodic-autobiographical memory (EAM) is regarded as the highest human ontogenetic achievement and as probably being uniquely human. EAM, autonoetic consciousness and the self are intimately linked, grounding, supporting and enriching each other's development and cohesiveness. Their development is influenced by the socio-cultural-linguistic environment in which an individual grows up or lives. On the other hand, through language, textualization and social exchange, all three elements leak into the world and participate to the dynamic shaping and re-shaping of the cultural scaffolding of the self, mental time traveling and EAM formation. Deficits in self-related processing, autonetic consciousness, emotional processing and mental time traveling can all lead to or co-occur with EAM disturbances, as we illustrate by findings from EAM impairments associated with neurological or psychiatric disorders.

  10. Hippocampus is place of interaction between unconscious and conscious memories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Züst, Marc Alain; Colella, Patrizio; Reber, Thomas Peter; Vuilleumier, Patrik; Hauf, Martinus; Ruch, Simon; Henke, Katharina

    2015-01-01

    Recent evidence suggests that humans can form and later retrieve new semantic relations unconsciously by way of hippocampus-the key structure also recruited for conscious relational (episodic) memory. If the hippocampus subserves both conscious and unconscious relational encoding/retrieval, one would expect the hippocampus to be place of unconscious-conscious interactions during memory retrieval. We tested this hypothesis in an fMRI experiment probing the interaction between the unconscious and conscious retrieval of face-associated information. For the establishment of unconscious relational memories, we presented subliminal (masked) combinations of unfamiliar faces and written occupations ("actor" or "politician"). At test, we presented the former subliminal faces, but now supraliminally, as cues for the reactivation of the unconsciously associated occupations. We hypothesized that unconscious reactivation of the associated occupation-actor or politician-would facilitate or inhibit the subsequent conscious retrieval of a celebrity's occupation, which was also actor or politician. Depending on whether the reactivated unconscious occupation was congruent or incongruent to the celebrity's occupation, we expected either quicker or delayed conscious retrieval process. Conscious retrieval was quicker in the congruent relative to a neutral baseline condition but not delayed in the incongruent condition. fMRI data collected during subliminal face-occupation encoding confirmed previous evidence that the hippocampus was interacting with neocortical storage sites of semantic knowledge to support relational encoding. fMRI data collected at test revealed that the facilitated conscious retrieval was paralleled by deactivations in the hippocampus and neocortical storage sites of semantic knowledge. We assume that the unconscious reactivation has pre-activated overlapping relational representations in the hippocampus reducing the neural effort for conscious retrieval. This

  11. Coherence in consciousness: paralimbic gamma synchrony of self-reference links conscious experiences

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lou, Hans C; Gross, Joachim; Biermann-Ruben, Katja

    2010-01-01

    . In minimal self-reference subjective experiences are self-aware in the weak sense that there is something it feels like for the subject to experience something. In autonoetic consciousness, consciousness emerges, by definition, by retrieval of memories of personally experienced events (episodic memory......A coherent and meaningful percept of the world is essential for human nature. Consequently, much speculation has focused on how this is achieved in the brain. It is thought that all conscious experiences have reference to the self. Self-reference may either be minimal or extended, i.e., autonoetic......). It has been shown with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) that a medial paralimbic circuitry is critical for self-reference. This circuitry includes anterior cingulate/medial prefrontal and posterior cingulate/medial parietal cortices, connected directly and via thalamus. We here hypothesized...

  12. Consciousness and stereoscopic environmental imaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Steve

    2014-02-01

    The question of human consciousness has intrigued philosophers and scientists for centuries: its nature, how we perceive our environment, how we think, our very awareness of thought and self. It has been suggested that stereoscopic vision is "a paradigm of how the mind works" 1 In depth perception, laws of perspective are known, reasoned, committed to memory from an early age; stereopsis, on the other hand, is a 3D experience governed by strict laws but actively joined within the brain―one sees it without explanation. How do we, in fact, process two different images into one 3D module within the mind and does an awareness of this process give us insight into the workings of our own consciousness? To translate this idea to imaging I employed ChromaDepth™ 3D glasses that rely on light being refracted in a different direction for each eye―colors of differing wavelengths appearing at varying distances from the viewer resulting in a 3D space. This involves neither calculation nor manufacture of two images or views. Environmental spatial imaging was developed―a 3D image was generated that literally surrounds the viewer. The image was printed and adhered to a semi-circular mount; the viewer then entered the interior to experience colored shapes suspended in a 3D space with an apparent loss of surface, or picture plane, upon which the image is rendered. By focusing our awareness through perception-based imaging we are able to gain a deeper understanding of how the brain works, how we see.

  13. Physiologic Measures of Animal Stress during Transitional States of Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert E. Meyer

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Determination of the humaneness of methods used to produce unconsciousness in animals, whether for anesthesia, euthanasia, humane slaughter, or depopulation, relies on our ability to assess stress, pain, and consciousness within the contexts of method and application. Determining the subjective experience of animals during transitional states of consciousness, however, can be quite difficult; further, loss of consciousness with different agents or methods may occur at substantially different rates. Stress and distress may manifest behaviorally (e.g., overt escape behaviors, approach-avoidance preferences [aversion] or physiologically (e.g., movement, vocalization, changes in electroencephalographic activity, heart rate, sympathetic nervous system [SNS] activity, hypothalamic-pituitary axis [HPA] activity, such that a one-size-fits-all approach cannot be easily applied to evaluate methods or determine specific species applications. The purpose of this review is to discuss methods of evaluating stress in animals using physiologic methods, with emphasis on the transition between the conscious and unconscious states.

  14. Quantum mechanics needs no consciousness (and the other way around)

    CERN Document Server

    Yu, Shan

    2010-01-01

    It has been suggested that consciousness plays an important role in quantum mechanics as it is necessary for the collapse of wave function during the measurement. Furthermore, this idea has spawned a symmetrical proposal: a possibility that quantum mechanics explains the emergence of consciousness in the brain. Here we formulated several predictions that follow from this hypothetical relationship and that can be empirically tested. Some of the experimental results that are already available suggest falsification of the first hypothesis. Thus, the suggested link between human consciousness and collapse of wave function does not seem viable. We discuss the constraints implied by the existing evidence on the role that the human observer may play for quantum mechanics and the role that quantum mechanics may play in the observer's consciousness.

  15. Hallmarks of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butler, Ann B

    2012-01-01

    Consciousness, ranging from the primary, or perceptual, level to high levels that include a sense of self, can be identified in various organisms by a set of hallmarks that include behavioral, neural and phenomenal and/or informational. Behavioral hallmarks include those that indicate high cognitive abilities, such behavioral flexibility, verbal abilities, episodic memories, theory of mind, object constancy, transitive inference and multistability, all of which have been demonstrated in birds as well as in primates. Neural hallmarks include the thalamocortical model for mammals and similar circuitry in some nonmammalian taxa. Informational hallmarks include sensorimotor awareness, as provided by somatosensory and/or lateral line systems, which may form the basis for the sense of self and distinguishing self from nonself, as well as other sensory information, such as the richness and quantity of color and form information obtained by the visual system. The comparative method reveals a correlation of these different types of hallmarks with each other in their degree of development, which thus may be indicative of the level of consciousness present in a particular species.

  16. What is consciousness?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solms, M

    1997-01-01

    In the past few years scientists and scholars in a variety of disciplines have been making concerted efforts to answer an ancient question, namely, How exactly do the physical processes in the brain cause consciousness? What is distinctive about the way in which modern scientists and scholars are approaching this question is that they are treating it as a scientific problem rather than a metaphysical one. This transition reflects the air of expectation in contemporary cognitive science to the effect that an empirical solution is imminent to a philosophical problem that previously was considered insoluble. Nevertheless, a recent authoritative review of the publications of such leading contemporary workers in the field as Francis Crick, Daniel Dennett, Gerald Edelman, Roger Penrose, and Israel Rosenfield has concluded that they have all failed to provide a satisfactory answer to the question (Searle 1995a). The present paper makes a psychoanalytic contribution to this interdisciplinary effort and provides an alternative answer to the question, based on Freud's conceptualization of the problem of consciousness. The paper takes a concrete example from Searle's review, reanalyses it within Freud's metapsychological frame of reference, and shows how this frame provides a radical solution to the problem. This implication of Freud's work has not hitherto been recognized and so has not received the attention it deserves.

  17. A Research of Conscious Experience and Plasticity of Human Brain and Implications for Adult Learning%大脑可塑性和意识经验对成人学习的影响及启示

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    姚满团

    2013-01-01

    大脑的可塑性为成人学习提供了生理条件;丰富的意识经验是成人学习重要的心理资源。终身学习进程中,应改变成人难以学习的传统观念,以丰富的学习和生活方式保持成人大脑的灵活性,重视情绪对其学习的积极作用,尊重成人个体独特的意识经验,重视意识经验中的意义、价值的理解和建构。%The plasticity of human brain is the physiological base of adult learning, and the conscious experience is the important psychological resource of adult learning. This essay suggests that, in the process of lifelong learning, the traditional ideas that adults are difficult in learning be modified;and their flexibility of brain be maintained through varieties of study and life style. Adults’ emotions, moreover, play a positive role in learning, and importance should be attached to the interpretation and construction of meaning and value to respect adults’ particular conscious experience.

  18. Preserved consciousness in vegetative and minimal conscious states

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kondziella, Daniel; Friberg, Christian K; Frokjaer, Vibe G;

    2016-01-01

    were insufficient for statistical evaluation. In conclusion, active paradigms may underestimate the degree of consciousness as compared to passive paradigms. While MCS patients show signs of preserved consciousness more frequently in both paradigms, roughly 15% of patients with a clinical diagnosis......Active, passive and resting state paradigms using functional MRI (fMRI) or EEG may reveal consciousness in the vegetative (VS) and the minimal conscious state (MCS). A meta-analysis was performed to assess the prevalence of preserved consciousness in VS and MCS as revealed by fMRI and EEG......, including command following (active paradigms), cortical functional connectivity elicited by external stimuli (passive paradigms) and default mode networks (resting state). Studies were selected from multiple indexing databases until February 2015 and evaluated using the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic...

  19. Consciousness: individuated information in action

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jakub Adam Jonkisz

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Within theoretical and empirical enquiries, many different meanings associated with consciousness have appeared, leaving the term itself quite vague. This makes formulating an abstract and unifying version of the concept of consciousness – the main aim of this article –into an urgent theoretical imperative. It is argued that consciousness, characterized as dually accessible (cognized from the inside and the outside, hierarchically referential (semantically ordered, bodily determined (embedded in the working structures of an organism or conscious system and useful in action (pragmatically functional, is a graded rather than an all-or-none phenomenon. A gradational approach, however, despite its explanatory advantages, can lead to some counterintuitive consequences and theoretical problems. In most such conceptions consciousness is extended globally (attached to primitive organisms or artificial systems, but also locally (connected to certain lower-level neuronal and bodily processes. For example, according to information integration theory (as introduced recently by Tononi and Koch, even such simple artificial systems as photodiodes possess miniscule amounts of consciousness. The major challenge for this article, then, is to establish reasonable, empirically justified constraints on how extended the range of a graded consciousness could be. It is argued that conscious systems are limited globally by the ability to individuate information (where individuated information is understood as evolutionarily embedded, socially altered and private, whereas local limitations should be determined on the basis of a hypothesis about the action-oriented nature of the processes that select states of consciousness. Using these constraints, an abstract concept of consciousness is arrived at, hopefully contributing to a more unified state of play within consciousness studies itself.

  20. Consciousness: individuated information in action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonkisz, Jakub

    2015-01-01

    Within theoretical and empirical enquiries, many different meanings associated with consciousness have appeared, leaving the term itself quite vague. This makes formulating an abstract and unifying version of the concept of consciousness - the main aim of this article -into an urgent theoretical imperative. It is argued that consciousness, characterized as dually accessible (cognized from the inside and the outside), hierarchically referential (semantically ordered), bodily determined (embedded in the working structures of an organism or conscious system), and useful in action (pragmatically functional), is a graded rather than an all-or-none phenomenon. A gradational approach, however, despite its explanatory advantages, can lead to some counterintuitive consequences and theoretical problems. In most such conceptions consciousness is extended globally (attached to primitive organisms or artificial systems), but also locally (connected to certain lower-level neuronal and bodily processes). For example, according to information integration theory (as introduced recently by Tononi and Koch, 2014), even such simple artificial systems as photodiodes possess miniscule amounts of consciousness. The major challenge for this article, then, is to establish reasonable, empirically justified constraints on how extended the range of a graded consciousness could be. It is argued that conscious systems are limited globally by the ability to individuate information (where individuated information is understood as evolutionarily embedded, socially altered, and private), whereas local limitations should be determined on the basis of a hypothesis about the action-oriented nature of the processes that select states of consciousness. Using these constraints, an abstract concept of consciousness is arrived at, hopefully contributing to a more unified state of play within consciousness studies itself.

  1. Towards an integrative theory of consciousness: part 2 (an anthology of various other models).

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Sousa, Avinash

    2013-01-01

    The study of consciousness has today moved beyond neurobiology and cognitive models. In the past few years, there has been a surge of research into various newer areas. The present article looks at the non-neurobiological and non-cognitive theories regarding this complex phenomenon, especially ones that self-psychology, self-theory, artificial intelligence, quantum physics, visual cognitive science and philosophy have to offer. Self-psychology has proposed the need to understand the self and its development, and the ramifications of the self for morality and empathy, which will help us understand consciousness better. There have been inroads made from the fields of computer science, machine technology and artificial intelligence, including robotics, into understanding the consciousness of these machines and their implications for human consciousness. These areas are explored. Visual cortex and emotional theories along with their implications are discussed. The phylogeny and evolution of the phenomenon of consciousness is also highlighted, with theories on the emergence of consciousness in fetal and neonatal life. Quantum physics and its insights into the mind, along with the implications of consciousness and physics and their interface are debated. The role of neurophilosophy to understand human consciousness, the functions of such a concept, embodiment, the dark side of consciousness, future research needs and limitations of a scientific theory of consciousness complete the review. The importance and salient features of each theory are discussed along with certain pitfalls, if present. A need for the integration of various theories to understand consciousness from a holistic perspective is stressed.

  2. Insights into plant consciousness from neuroscience, physics and mathematics: a role for quasicrystals?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardiner, John

    2012-09-01

    There is considerable debate over whether plants are conscious and this, indeed, is an important question. Here I look at developments in neuroscience, physics and mathematics that may impact on this question. Two major concomitants of consciousness in animals are microtubule function and electrical gamma wave synchrony. Both these factors may also play a role in plant consciousness. I show that plants possess aperiodic quasicrystal structures composed of ribosomes that may enable quantum computing, which has been suggested to lie at the core of animal consciousness. Finally I look at whether a microtubule fractal suggests that electric current plays a part in conventional neurocomputing processes in plants.

  3. A New Approach and Analysis of Modeling the Human Body in RFID-Enabled Body-Centric Wireless Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karoliina Koski

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Body-centric wireless systems demand wearable sensor and tag antennas that have robust impedance matching and provide enough gain for a reliable wireless communication link. In this paper, we discuss a novel and practical technique for the modeling of the human body in UHF RFID body-centric wireless systems. What makes this technique different is that we base the human model on measured far-field response from a reference tag attached to the human body. Hereby, the human body model accounts for the encountered human body effects on the tag performance. The on-body measurements are fast, which allows establishing a catalog of human body models for different tag locations and human subjects. Such catalog would provide a ready simulation model for a wide range of wireless body-centric applications in order to initiate a functional design. Our results demonstrate that the suggested modeling technique can be used in the design and optimization of wearable antennas for different real-case body-centric scenarios.

  4. Oscillatory Correlates of Visual Consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano Gallotto

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Conscious experiences are linked to activity in our brain: the neural correlates of consciousness (NCC. Empirical research on these NCCs covers a wide range of brain activity signals, measures, and methodologies. In this paper, we focus on spontaneous brain oscillations; rhythmic fluctuations of neuronal (population activity which can be characterized by a range of parameters, such as frequency, amplitude (power, and phase. We provide an overview of oscillatory measures that appear to correlate with conscious perception. We also discuss how increasingly sophisticated techniques allow us to study the causal role of oscillatory activity in conscious perception (i.e., ‘entrainment’. This review of oscillatory correlates of consciousness suggests that, for example, activity in the alpha-band (7–13 Hz may index, or even causally support, conscious perception. But such results also showcase an increasingly acknowledged difficulty in NCC research; the challenge of separating neural activity necessary for conscious experience to arise (prerequisites from neural activity underlying the conscious experience itself (substrates or its results (consequences.

  5. Oscillatory Correlates of Visual Consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallotto, Stefano; Sack, Alexander T; Schuhmann, Teresa; de Graaf, Tom A

    2017-01-01

    Conscious experiences are linked to activity in our brain: the neural correlates of consciousness (NCC). Empirical research on these NCCs covers a wide range of brain activity signals, measures, and methodologies. In this paper, we focus on spontaneous brain oscillations; rhythmic fluctuations of neuronal (population) activity which can be characterized by a range of parameters, such as frequency, amplitude (power), and phase. We provide an overview of oscillatory measures that appear to correlate with conscious perception. We also discuss how increasingly sophisticated techniques allow us to study the causal role of oscillatory activity in conscious perception (i.e., 'entrainment'). This review of oscillatory correlates of consciousness suggests that, for example, activity in the alpha-band (7-13 Hz) may index, or even causally support, conscious perception. But such results also showcase an increasingly acknowledged difficulty in NCC research; the challenge of separating neural activity necessary for conscious experience to arise (prerequisites) from neural activity underlying the conscious experience itself (substrates) or its results (consequences).

  6. Female Consciousness in Jane Eyre

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    鲁存

    2014-01-01

    Charlotte Bront is a remarkable women writer in the 19th-century English literature. Jane Eyre received comprehensive attention. This thesis analyzes main characters from three aspects, Jane Eyre’s female consciousness, pursuit of equality, freedom and presents the limitation in Jane Eyre. It also examines the nature of Charlotte Bront?’s pioneering female consciousness and demonstrates its positive development.

  7. ELT and Consciousness-Raising

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Jardani, Khalid Salim Saif

    2012-01-01

    The paper highlights the concept of consciousness-raising. It relates it to different aspects of ELT such as explicit teaching, language awareness, language acquisition and practice. How these terms are related to the concept of consciousness-raising within the English Language teaching. Its main aim is to help learners to notice for themselves…

  8. Development of Four Dimensional Human Model that Enables Deformation of Skin, Organs and Blood Vessel System During Body Movement - Visualizing Movements of the Musculoskeletal System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Naoki; Hattori, Asaki; Hashizume, Makoto

    2016-01-01

    We constructed a four dimensional human model that is able to visualize the structure of a whole human body, including the inner structures, in real-time to allow us to analyze human dynamic changes in the temporal, spatial and quantitative domains. To verify whether our model was generating changes according to real human body dynamics, we measured a participant's skin expansion and compared it to that of the model conducted under the same body movement. We also made a contribution to the field of orthopedics, as we were able to devise a display method that enables the observer to more easily observe the changes made in the complex skeletal muscle system during body movements, which in the past were difficult to visualize.

  9. Evidence that logical reasoning depends on conscious processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeWall, C Nathan; Baumeister, Roy F; Masicampo, E J

    2008-09-01

    Humans, unlike other animals, are equipped with a powerful brain that permits conscious awareness and reflection. A growing trend in psychological science has questioned the benefits of consciousness, however. Testing a hypothesis advanced by [Lieberman, M. D., Gaunt, R., Gilbert, D. T., & Trope, Y. (2002). Reflection and reflexion: A social cognitive neuroscience approach to attributional inference. Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, 34, 199-249], four studies suggested that the conscious, reflective processing system is vital for logical reasoning. Substantial decrements in logical reasoning were found when a cognitive load manipulation preoccupied conscious processing, while hampering the nonconscious system with consciously suppressed thoughts failed to impair reasoning (Experiment 1). Nonconscious activation (priming) of the idea of logical reasoning increased the activation of logic-relevant concepts, but failed to improve logical reasoning performance (Experiments 2a-2c) unless the logical conclusions were largely intuitive and thus not reliant on logical reasoning (Experiment 3). Meanwhile, stimulating the conscious goal of reasoning well led to improvements in reasoning performance (Experiment 4). These findings offer evidence that logical reasoning is aided by the conscious, reflective processing system.

  10. The Emerging Physics of Consciousness

    CERN Document Server

    Tuszynski, Jack A

    2006-01-01

    Consciousness remains one of the major unsolved problems in science. How do the feelings and sensations making up conscious experience arise from the concerted actions of nerve cells and their associated synaptic and molecular processes? Can such feelings be explained by modern science, or is there an entirely different kind of explanation needed? And how can this seemingly intractable problem be approached experimentally? How do the operations of the conscious mind emerge out of the specific interactions involving billions of neurons? This book seeks answers to these questions on the underlying assumption that consciousness can be understood using the intellectual potential of modern physics and other sciences. There are a number of theories of consciousness, some based on classical physics while others require the use of quantum concepts. The latter ones have drawn criticism from the parts of the scientific establishment while simultaneously claiming that classical approaches are doomed to failure. The cont...

  11. Impact of Emotion on Consciousness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Kristine Rømer; Lou, Hans Olav Christensen; Jønsson, Morten

    2011-01-01

    showed that participants were more confident and accurate when consciously seeing happy versus sad/neutral faces and words. When stimuli were presented subliminally, we found no effect of emotion. To investigate the neural basis of this impact of emotion, we recorded local field potentials (LFPs......) directly in the ACC in a chronic pain patient. Behavioural findings were replicated: the patient was more confident and accurate when (consciously) seeing happy versus sad faces, while no effect was seen in subliminal trials. Mirroring behavioural findings, we found significant differences in the LFPs...... after around 500 ms (lasting 30 ms) in conscious trials between happy and sad faces, while no effect was found in subliminal trials. We thus demonstrate a striking impact of emotion on conscious experience, with positive emotional stimuli enhancing conscious reportability. In line with previous studies...

  12. Characterizing synaptic protein development in human visual cortex enables alignment of synaptic age with rat visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto, Joshua G A; Jones, David G; Williams, C Kate; Murphy, Kathryn M

    2015-01-01

    Although many potential neuroplasticity based therapies have been developed in the lab, few have translated into established clinical treatments for human neurologic or neuropsychiatric diseases. Animal models, especially of the visual system, have shaped our understanding of neuroplasticity by characterizing the mechanisms that promote neural changes and defining timing of the sensitive period. The lack of knowledge about development of synaptic plasticity mechanisms in human cortex, and about alignment of synaptic age between animals and humans, has limited translation of neuroplasticity therapies. In this study, we quantified expression of a set of highly conserved pre- and post-synaptic proteins (Synapsin, Synaptophysin, PSD-95, Gephyrin) and found that synaptic development in human primary visual cortex (V1) continues into late childhood. Indeed, this is many years longer than suggested by neuroanatomical studies and points to a prolonged sensitive period for plasticity in human sensory cortex. In addition, during childhood we found waves of inter-individual variability that are different for the four proteins and include a stage during early development (visual cortex and identified a simple linear equation that provides robust alignment of synaptic age between humans and rats. Alignment of synaptic ages is important for age-appropriate targeting and effective translation of neuroplasticity therapies from the lab to the clinic.

  13. What explains consciousness? Or…What consciousness explains?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dulany, Donelson E

    2014-01-01

    In this invited commentary I focus on the topic addressed in three papers: De Sousa's (2013[1617]) Toward an Integrative Theory of Consciousness, a monograph with Parts 1 & 2, as well as commentaries by Pereira (2013a[59]) and Hirstein (2013[42]). All three are impressively scholarly and can stand-and shout-on their own. But theory of consciousness? My aim is to slice that topic into the two fundamentally different kinds of theories of consciousness, say what appears to be an ideology, out of behaviourism into cognitivism, now also influencing the quest for an "explanation of consciousness" in cognitive neuroscience. I will then say what can be expected given what we know of the complexity of brain structure, the richness of a conscious "vocabulary", and current technological limits of brain imaging. This will then turn to the strategy for examining "what consciousness explains"-metatheory, theories, mappings, and a methodology of competitive support, a methodology especially important where there are competing commitments. There are also increasingly common identifications of methodological bias in, along with failures to replicate, studies reporting unconscious controls in decision, social priming-as there have been in perception, learning, problem solving, etc. The literature critique has provided evidence taken as reducing, and in some cases eliminating, a role for conscious controls-a position consistent with that ideology out of behaviourism into cognitivism. It is an ideological position that fails to recognize the fundamental distinction between theoretical and metaphysical assertions.

  14. [Brain and consciousness].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández de Molina, Antonio

    2002-01-01

    The philosophical and biological concepts of consciousness are briefly reviewed, from Aristoteles to Descartes to the modern neurobiologist of the last 15 years. The CRICK's corticothalamic integration view, the Edelman's primary and higher order consciousness concept as well as the Edelman and Tononi's dynamic core concept were discussed. Then the corticothalamic resonance theory by Llinás was reported. Central to Llinás's theory is the existence of electrical intrinsic properties of neurones in the central nervous system that allows them to oscillate at different frequencies and if the membrane properties are suitable also to resonate at specific frequencies. From this oscillation and the neuronal connectivity result the corticothalamic dynamic loops specific and non specific. The dynamic corticothalamic loop of the specific thalamic nuclei connect directly as well as through the inhibitory interneurones in layer 4, with the pyramids in layer 5 and 6. The pyramids's rhythmic discharge excite the thalamic specific neurones and indirectly through the reticular neurones a rebound burst is also generated in the specific relay neurones. The oscillatory properties of cortical inhibitory interneurones initiates the action of the recurrent circuit whose function is to inform the cerebral cortex of the content of the sensory pathways. On the other side, the thalamocortical resonant loops of the non especific nuclei, particularly the intralaminar, connect with theapical dendrites of layer 1 pyramids whose discharge go to the thalamic relay neurones directly and through the reticular nucleus. The clinical and MEG data are consistent with the suggestion that the intralaminar nucleus works as providing the binding signal to the sensory specif le information conveyed by the specific pathways. In this way the non specific corticothalamic loop would act as the conjunction mechanism along the dendritic apical shaft with the specific sensory information. The specific loop will

  15. Improving the clinical assessment of consciousness with advances in electrophysiological and neuroimaging techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gawryluk, Jodie R; D'Arcy, Ryan C N; Connolly, John F; Weaver, Donald F

    2010-01-29

    In clinical neurology, a comprehensive understanding of consciousness has been regarded as an abstract concept--best left to philosophers. However, times are changing and the need to clinically assess consciousness is increasingly becoming a real-world, practical challenge. Current methods for evaluating altered levels of consciousness are highly reliant on either behavioural measures or anatomical imaging. While these methods have some utility, estimates of misdiagnosis are worrisome (as high as 43%)--clearly this is a major clinical problem. The solution must involve objective, physiologically based measures that do not rely on behaviour. This paper reviews recent advances in physiologically based measures that enable better evaluation of consciousness states (coma, vegetative state, minimally conscious state, and locked in syndrome). Based on the evidence to-date, electroencephalographic and neuroimaging based assessments of consciousness provide valuable information for evaluation of residual function, formation of differential diagnoses, and estimation of prognosis.

  16. Improving the clinical assessment of consciousness with advances in electrophysiological and neuroimaging techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D'Arcy Ryan CN

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In clinical neurology, a comprehensive understanding of consciousness has been regarded as an abstract concept - best left to philosophers. However, times are changing and the need to clinically assess consciousness is increasingly becoming a real-world, practical challenge. Current methods for evaluating altered levels of consciousness are highly reliant on either behavioural measures or anatomical imaging. While these methods have some utility, estimates of misdiagnosis are worrisome (as high as 43% - clearly this is a major clinical problem. The solution must involve objective, physiologically based measures that do not rely on behaviour. This paper reviews recent advances in physiologically based measures that enable better evaluation of consciousness states (coma, vegetative state, minimally conscious state, and locked in syndrome. Based on the evidence to-date, electroencephalographic and neuroimaging based assessments of consciousness provide valuable information for evaluation of residual function, formation of differential diagnoses, and estimation of prognosis.

  17. Mind and consciousness as per j. Krishnamurti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Sousa, Avinash

    2012-01-01

    The present article looks at mind and consciousness from the perspective of the eminent Indian philosopher, Jiddu Krishnamurti. He believed in total awareness as being essential for a free mind. Human beings always learned from their past, and it was important that they looked inwards and freed themselves from self-perpetuated torment. It was also necessary that they avoided repression. The society in which we live should be organic, where, although individuals had no choice but to dwell in that society, it was one where the interests of the individual and society were the same. He also maintained that religion was always the result of past conditioning. A mind should be investigative and scientific. One could not get pleasure without difficulty, for which living in totality, not in segments, was a must. We often dwell on one part of the consciousness and miss its holistic aspect. One must uncover the mind layer by layer to achieve complete growth. Deeper delving into it and a study of J. Krishnamurti's philosophy is a must for the understanding of human consciousness, in a manner that is simple, yet abstract and deep.

  18. Mind and Consciousness as per J. Krishnamurti

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Avinash De Sousa

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The present article looks at mind and consciousness from the perspective of the eminent Indian philosopher, Jiddu Krishnamurti. He believed in total awareness as being essential for a free mind. Human beings always learned from their past, and it was important that they looked inwards and freed themselves from self-perpetuated torment. It was also necessary that they avoided repression. The society in which we live should be organic, where, although individuals had no choice but to dwell in that society, it was one where the interests of the individual and society were the same. He also maintained that religion was always the result of past conditioning. A mind should be investigative and scientific. One could not get pleasure without difficulty, for which living in totality, not in segments, was a must. We often dwell on one part of the consciousness and miss its holistic aspect. One must uncover the mind layer by layer to achieve complete growth. Deeper delving into it and a study of J. Krishnamurti′s philosophy is a must for the understanding of human consciousness, in a manner that is simple, yet abstract and deep.

  19. Consciousness and the brain: evolutionary aspects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Towers, B

    1979-01-01

    Self-reflective consciousness is distinguished from 'simple' awareness and from conscious awareness. Awareness is a fundamental property of living matter as it reacts to environmental stimuli. A hypothesis is advanced to account for the general phenomenon of decussation of nerve fibres in the central nervous system of vertebrates. This feature, the crossing over of nerve fibres to the opposite side of the brain, is interpreted as exemplifying the inherent caution of living forms. The evolution of increasing complexity of structure in spinal cord and brain is a prerequisite for increasing awareness of the environment and for increasing freedom from its constraints. Conscious awareness is manifested in living forms primarily when they are learning to respond either to new stimuli or to internal demands such as breathing and walking. The relegation of learnt activities to the realm of unconscious reflex allows for concentration on new and more complex responses, which leads to further freedom of action. The seeming simplicity of human thinking rests on the increasing complexity of the evolving brain and of appropriate responses learnt during phylogenetic development. The human brain and its thinking functions are basically trustworthy because they are rooted in biological evolution.

  20. PRIMARY SCHOOL 4TH GRADE STUDENTS’ OPINIONS OF CONSCIOUS CONSUMERISM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Faruk MALBELEĞİ

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Primary education is an important step in formal education. In this step, social studies are one of the subjects that teach students matters related to life. Social studies are based on a variety of disciplines (Doğanay, 2002. One of these disciplines is economy. Economy is an indispensable part of human life. One of the most significant common traits of individuals is that they are all consumers (Ferman, 1993. Students implicitly or explicitly play a role in consumption and they maintain their role in consumption when they become adults. This fact makes the students’ opinions regarding conscious consumption important. The primary objective of this study is set so as to find out 4th grade students’ opinions of conscious consumerism. For this purpose, the answers of the questions below were seeked; (i which characteristics do a conscious consumer have? (ii As a consumer what do you pay attention to when you are shopping? Method: The study is based on phenomenology, a qualitative study design. Studies on revealing and interpreting individual opinions and perspectives about a certain phenomenon are generally defined as phenomenology (Yıldırım and Simşek, 2006. The purpose of this study is to introduce the opinions of primary school 4th grade students regarding conscious consumerism. The study group of this study consisted of a total of 21 students, including 8 female students and 13 male students, receiving education in Sakarya, Adapazarı in 2010-2011 educational year. The data acquired from students was analyzed by the content analysis method. A semi-structured interview form was designed following a review of literature. In semi-structured interviews, questions are predetermined and an attempt is made to collect data through those questions (Karasar, 2005. The questions in the interview form which is prepared by researchers are structured so as to reveal the students’ opinions regarding conscious consumerism. Two specialists in the

  1. A hybrid neural network model for consciousness

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    蔺杰; 金小刚; 杨建刚

    2004-01-01

    A new framework for consciousness is introduced based upon traditional artificial neural network models. This framework reflects explicit connections between two parts of the brain: one global working memory and distributed modular cerebral networks relating to specific brain functions. Accordingly this framework is composed of three layers,physical mnemonic layer and abstract thinking layer,which cooperate together through a recognition layer to accomplish information storage and cognition using algorithms of how these interactions contribute to consciousness:(1)the reception process whereby cerebral subsystems group distributed signals into coherent object patterns;(2)the partial recognition process whereby patterns from particular subsystems are compared or stored as knowledge; and(3)the resonant learning process whereby global workspace stably adjusts its structure to adapt to patterns' changes. Using this framework,various sorts of human actions can be explained,leading to a general approach for analyzing brain functions.

  2. A hybrid neural network model for consciousness

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    蔺杰; 金小刚; 杨建刚

    2004-01-01

    A new framework for consciousness is introduced based upon traditional artificial neural network models. This framework reflects explicit connections between two parts of the brain: one global working memory and distributed modular cerebral networks relating to specific brain functions. Accordingly this framework is composed of three layers, physical mnemonic layer and abstract thinking layer, which cooperate together through a recognition layer to accomplish information storage and cognition using algorithms of how these interactions contribute to consciousness: (l) the reception process whereby cerebral subsystems group distributed signals into coherent object patterns; (2) the partial recognition process whereby patterns from particular subsystems are compared or stored as knowledge; and (3) the resonant learning process whereby global workspace stably adjusts its structure to adapt to patterns' changes. Using this framework, various sorts of human actions can be explained, leading to a general approach for analyzing brain functions.

  3. Memory and consciousness in Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souchay, C; Moulin, C J A

    2009-06-01

    Human memory can be split into familiarity and recollection processes which contribute to different aspects of memory function. These separate processes result in different experiential states. In this review, we examine how this dominant theoretical framework can explain the subjective experience of people with Alzheimer's disease, the profile of their memory impairments and their inability to reflect on their performance metacognitively. We conclude with a brief overview of the brain regions supporting conscious experience of memory, and propose that the memory and awareness deficits seen in Alzheimer's disease could be conceived of as a deficit in autonoetic consciousness. A future priority for research is to take these robust constructs into research programmes examining rehabilitation and pharmacological intervention.

  4. The biology/disease-driven human proteome project (B/D-HPP): enabling protein research for the life sciences community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aebersold, Ruedi; Bader, Gary D; Edwards, Aled M; van Eyk, Jennifer E; Kussmann, Martin; Qin, Jun; Omenn, Gilbert S

    2013-01-04

    The biology and disease oriented branch of the Human Proteome Project (B/D-HPP) was established by the Human Proteome Organization (HUPO) with the main goal of supporting the broad application of state-of the-art measurements of proteins and proteomes by life scientists studying the molecular mechanisms of biological processes and human disease. This will be accomplished through the generation of research and informational resources that will support the routine and definitive measurement of the process or disease relevant proteins. The B/D-HPP is highly complementary to the C-HPP and will provide datasets and biological characterization useful to the C-HPP teams. In this manuscript we describe the goals, the plans, and the current status of the of the B/D-HPP.

  5. New views of the human NK cell immunological synapse: recent advances enabled by super- and high- resolution imaging techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily M. Mace

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Imaging technology has undergone rapid growth with the development of super resolution microscopy, which enables resolution below the diffraction barrier of light (~200 nm. In addition, new techniques for single molecule imaging are being added to the cell biologist’s arsenal. Immunologists have exploited these techniques to advance understanding of NK biology, particularly that of the immune synapse. The immune synapse’s relatively small size and complex architecture combined with its exquisitely controlled signaling milieu have made it a challenge to visualize. In this review we highlight and discuss new insights into NK cell immune synapse formation and regulation revealed by cutting edge imaging techniques, including super resolution microscopy and high resolution total internal reflection microscopy and Förster resonance energy transfer.

  6. Enabling excellence

    CERN Multimedia

    2009-01-01

    I was pleased to see so many of you at the Human Resources Strategy Forum on Monday 23 February. CERN needs a new HR strategy, one that responds to the needs of the Organization and reflects the policy of the new management. We need an approach that ensures that we have the right people in the right places at the right time. And for that, we need your input. At the Forum, Enrico Chiaveri and Anne-Sylvie Catherin spoke of the eight initiatives that HR plans to implement to drive the new strategy forward. Today, I’d like to focus on the first initiative, a staff member survey. We’re doing this because your opinions matter. The Staff Association has conducted surveys in the past, and for this I’m grateful: their surveys already allow us to take the pulse of CERN opinion, and I am pleased that the Staff Association has been involved in this initiative from the start. The fact that we’re carrying out this survey with the help of ...

  7. Human maxillary sinus floor elevation as a model for bone regeneration enabling the application of one-step surgical procedures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Farre-Guasch, E.; Prins, H.J.; Overman, J.R.; ten Bruggenkate, C.M.; Schulten, E.A.J.M.; Helder, M.N.; Klein-Nulend, J.

    2013-01-01

    Bone loss in the oral and maxillofacial region caused by trauma, tumors, congenital disorders, or degenerative diseases is a health care problem worldwide. To restore (reconstruct) these bone defects, human or animal bone grafts or alloplastic (synthetic) materials have been used. However, several d

  8. Pupil dilation patterns reflect the contents of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Olivia; Wheatley, Thalia

    2015-09-01

    The study of human consciousness has historically depended on introspection. However, introspection is constrained by what can be remembered and verbalized. Here, we demonstrate the utility of high temporal resolution pupillometry to track the locus of conscious attention dynamically, over a single trial. While eye-tracked, participants heard several musical clips played diotically (same music in each ear) and, later, dichotically (two clips played simultaneously, one in each ear). During dichotic presentation, participants attended to only one ear. We found that the temporal pattern of pupil dilation dynamics over a single trial discriminated which piece of music was consciously attended on dichotic trials. Deconvolving these pupillary responses further revealed the real-time changes in stimulus salience motivating pupil dilation. Taken together, these results show that pupil dilation patterns during single-exposure to dynamic stimuli can be exploited to discern the contents of conscious attention.

  9. The concept possession hypothesis of self-consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savanah, Stephane

    2012-06-01

    This paper presents the hypothesis that concept possession is sufficient and necessary for self-consciousness. If this is true it provides a yardstick for gauging the validity of different research paradigms in which claims for self-consciousness in animals or human infants are made: a convincing demonstration of concept possession in a research subject, such as a display of inferential reasoning, may be taken as conclusive evidence of self-consciousness. Intuitively, there appears to be a correlation between intelligence in animals (which presupposes concept possession) and the existence of self-consciousness. I present three discussions to support the hypothesis: an analogy between perception and conception, where both are self-specifying; an argument that any web of concepts will always include the self-concept; and a fresh interpretation of Bermũdez (1998) showing how his theory of non-conceptual content provides strong support for the concept possession hypothesis.

  10. Multisensory brain mechanisms of bodily self-consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanke, Olaf

    2012-07-18

    Recent research has linked bodily self-consciousness to the processing and integration of multisensory bodily signals in temporoparietal, premotor, posterior parietal and extrastriate cortices. Studies in which subjects receive ambiguous multisensory information about the location and appearance of their own body have shown that these brain areas reflect the conscious experience of identifying with the body (self-identification (also known as body-ownership)), the experience of where 'I' am in space (self-location) and the experience of the position from where 'I' perceive the world (first-person perspective). Along with phenomena of altered states of self-consciousness in neurological patients and electrophysiological data from non-human primates, these findings may form the basis for a neurobiological model of bodily self-consciousness.

  11. Consciousness in dolphins? A review of recent evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harley, Heidi E

    2013-06-01

    For millennia, dolphins have intrigued humans. Scientific study has confirmed that bottlenose dolphins are large-brained, highly social mammals with an extended developmental period, flexible cognitive capacities, and powerful acoustic abilities including a sophisticated echolocation system. These findings have led some to ask if dolphins experience aspects of consciousness. Recent investigations targeting self-recognition/self-awareness and metacognition, constructs tied to consciousness on some accounts, have analyzed the dolphin's ability to recognize itself in a mirror or on a video as well as to monitor its own knowledge in a perceptual categorization task. The current article reviews this work with dolphins and grapples with some of the challenges in designing, conducting, and interpreting these studies as well as with general issues related to studying consciousness in animals. The existing evidence does not provide a convincing case for consciousness in dolphins. For productive scientific work on consciousness in dolphins (and other animals including humans), we need clearer characterizations of consciousness, better methods for studying it, and appropriate paradigms for interpreting outcomes. A current focus on metamemory in animals offers promise for future discovery in this area.

  12. Building Upon the ISS and HST Experience. Science Enabled by Returning Humans to the Moon: An Architectural Overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thronson, Harley A.

    2008-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation discusses the science that can be accomplished by returning humans to space, and to the moon. With modest modifications to the planned future Constellation vehicle (i.e., the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle), astronomers, and other scientist can anticipate major scientific accomplishments that would not otherwise be possible. Much of this can be attributed to the experience gained from the International Space Station Construction and the Hubble Space Telescope servicing missions.

  13. Enabling Healthcare IT Governance: Human Task Management Service for Administering Emergency Department's Resources for Efficient Patient Flow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Salvador; Aziz, Ayesha; Chatwin, Chris

    2014-01-01

    The use of Health Information Technology (HIT) to improve healthcare service delivery is constantly increasing due to research advances in medical science and information systems. Having a fully automated process solution for a Healthcare Organization (HCO) requires a combination of organizational strategies along with a selection of technologies that facilitate the goal of improving clinical outcomes. HCOs, requires dynamic management of care capability to realize the full potential of HIT. Business Process Management (BPM) is being increasingly adopted to streamline the healthcare service delivery and management processes. Emergency Departments (EDs) provide a case in point, which require multidisciplinary resources and services to deliver effective clinical outcomes. Managed care involves the coordination of a range of services in an ED. Although fully automated processes in emergency care provide a cutting edge example of service delivery, there are many situations that require human interactions with the computerized systems; e.g. Medication Approvals, care transfer, acute patient care. This requires a coordination mechanism for all the resources, computer and human, to work side by side to provide the best care. To ensure evidence-based medical practice in ED, we have designed a Human Task Management service to model the process of coordination of ED resources based on the UK's NICE Clinical guideline for managing the care of acutely ill patients. This functionality is implemented using Java Business process Management (jBPM).

  14. Diclofenac enables unprecedented week-long microneedle-enhanced delivery of a skin impermeable medication in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brogden, Nicole K; Banks, Stan L; Crofford, Leslie J; Stinchcomb, Audra L

    2013-08-01

    Microneedles applied to the skin create micropores, allowing transdermal drug delivery of skin-impermeable compounds. The first human study with this technique demonstrated delivery of naltrexone (an opioid antagonist) for two to three days. Rapid micropore closure, however, blunts the delivery window. Application of diclofenac (an anti-inflammatory) allows seven days of naltrexone delivery in animals. The purpose of the current work was to demonstrate delivery of naltrexone for seven days following one microneedle treatment in humans. Human subjects were treated with microneedles, diclofenac (or placebo), and naltrexone. Impedance measurements were used as a surrogate marker to measure micropore formation, and plasma naltrexone concentrations were measured for seven days post-microneedle application. Impedance dropped significantly from baseline to post-microneedle treatment, confirming micropore formation. Naltrexone was detected for seven days in Group 1 (diclofenac + naltrexone, n = 6), vs. 72 h in Group 2 (placebo + naltrexone, n = 2). At study completion, a significant difference in impedance was observed between intact and microneedle-treated skin in Group 1 (confirming the presence of micropores). This is the first study demonstrating week-long drug delivery after one microneedle application, which would increase patient compliance and allow delivery of therapies for chronic diseases.

  15. Two-color widefield fluorescence microendoscopy enables multiplexed molecular imaging in the alveolar space of human lung tissue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krstajić, Nikola; Akram, Ahsan R.; Choudhary, Tushar R.; McDonald, Neil; Tanner, Michael G.; Pedretti, Ettore; Dalgarno, Paul A.; Scholefield, Emma; Girkin, John M.; Moore, Anne; Bradley, Mark; Dhaliwal, Kevin

    2016-04-01

    We demonstrate a fast two-color widefield fluorescence microendoscopy system capable of simultaneously detecting several disease targets in intact human ex vivo lung tissue. We characterize the system for light throughput from the excitation light emitting diodes, fluorescence collection efficiency, and chromatic focal shifts. We demonstrate the effectiveness of the instrument by imaging bacteria (Pseudomonas aeruginosa) in ex vivo human lung tissue. We describe a mechanism of bacterial detection through the fiber bundle that uses blinking effects of bacteria as they move in front of the fiber core providing detection of objects smaller than the fiber core and cladding (˜3 μm). This effectively increases the measured spatial resolution of 4 μm. We show simultaneous imaging of neutrophils, monocytes, and fungus (Aspergillus fumigatus) in ex vivo human lung tissue. The instrument has 10 nM and 50 nM sensitivity for fluorescein and Cy5 solutions, respectively. Lung tissue autofluorescence remains visible at up to 200 fps camera acquisition rate. The optical system lends itself to clinical translation due to high-fluorescence sensitivity, simplicity, and the ability to multiplex several pathological molecular imaging targets simultaneously.

  16. Science of the conscious mind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ascoli, Giorgio A; Samsonovich, Alexei V

    2008-12-01

    Human beings have direct access to their own mental states, but can only indirectly observe cosmic radiation and enzyme kinetics. Why then can we measure the temperature of far away galaxies and the activation constant of kinases to the third digit, yet we only gauge our happiness on a scale from 1 to 7? Here we propose a radical research paradigm shift to embrace the subjective conscious mind into the realm of objective empirical science. Key steps are the axiomatic acceptance of first-person experiences as scientific observables; the definition of a quantitative, reliable metric system based on natural language; and the careful distinction of subjective mental states (e.g., interpretation and intent) from physically measurable sensory and motor behaviors (input and output). Using this approach, we propose a series of reproducible experiments that may help define a still largely unexplored branch of science. We speculate that the development of this new discipline will be initially parallel to, and eventually converging with, neurobiology and physics.

  17. Quantum-Holographic Informational Consciousness

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Francisco Di Biase

    2009-01-01

      The author propose a quantum-informational holographic model of brain-consciousness-universe interactions based in the holonomic neural networks of Karl Pribram, in the holographic quantum theory...

  18. Conscious brain, metacognition and schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bob, Petr; Pec, Ondrej; Mishara, Aaron L; Touskova, Tereza; Lysaker, Paul H

    2016-07-01

    Recent findings indicate that the binding and synchronization of distributed neural activities are crucial for cognitive processes and consciousness. In addition, there is increasing evidence that disrupted feature binding is related to experiences of disintegration of consciousness in schizophrenia. These data suggest that the disrupted binding and disintegration of consciousness could be typically related to schizophrenia in terms of Bleuler's concept of "splitting". In this context, deficits in metacognitive capacity in schizophrenia may be conceptualized as a spectrum from more discrete to more synthetic activities, related to specific levels of neural binding and neurocognitive deficits. This review summarizes the recent research on metacognition and its relationship to deficits of conscious awareness that may be found in schizophrenia patients. Deficits in synthetic metacognition are likely linked to the integration of information during specific processes of neural binding. Those in turn may be related to a range of mental activities including reasoning style, learning potential and insight.

  19. Narrating consciousness: language, media and embodiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayles, N Katherine; Pulizzi, James J

    2010-01-01

    Although there has long been a division in studies of consciousness between a focus on neuronal processes or conversely an emphasis on the ruminations of a conscious self, the long-standing split between mechanism and meaning within the brain was mirrored by a split without, between information as a technical term and the meanings that messages are commonly thought to convey. How to heal this breach has posed formidable problems to researchers. Working through the history of cybernetics, one of the historical sites where Claude Shannon's information theory quickly became received doctrine, we argue that the cybernetic program as it developed through second-order cybernetics and autopoietic theory remains incomplete. In this article, we return to fundamental questions about pattern and noise, context and meaning, to forge connections between consciousness, narrative and media. The thrust of our project is to reintroduce context and narrative as crucial factors in the processes of meaning-making. The project proceeds along two fronts: advancing a theoretical framework within which context plays its property central role; and demonstrating the importance of context by analyzing two fictions, Stanislaw Lem's "His Master's Voice" and Joseph McElroy's "Plus," in which context has been deformed by being wrenched away from normal human environments, with radical consequences for processes of meaning-making.

  20. Inhibition of TGF-β signaling enables human corneal endothelial cell expansion in vitro for use in regenerative medicine.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naoki Okumura

    Full Text Available Corneal endothelial dysfunctions occurring in patients with Fuchs' endothelial corneal dystrophy, pseudoexfoliation syndrome, corneal endotheliitis, and surgically induced corneal endothelial damage cause blindness due to the loss of endothelial function that maintains corneal transparency. Transplantation of cultivated corneal endothelial cells (CECs has been researched to repair endothelial dysfunction in animal models, though the in vitro expansion of human CECs (HCECs is a pivotal practical issue. In this study we established an optimum condition for the cultivation of HCECs. When exposed to culture conditions, both primate and human CECs showed two distinct phenotypes: contact-inhibited polygonal monolayer and fibroblastic phenotypes. The use of SB431542, a selective inhibitor of the transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-β receptor, counteracted the fibroblastic phenotypes to the normal contact-inhibited monolayer, and these polygonal cells maintained endothelial physiological functions. Expression of ZO-1 and Na(+/K(+-ATPase maintained their subcellular localization at the plasma membrane. Furthermore, expression of type I collagen and fibronectin was greatly reduced. This present study may prove to be the substantial protocol to provide the efficient in vitro expansion of HCECs with an inhibitor to the TGF-β receptor, and may ultimately provide clinicians with a new therapeutic modality in regenerative medicine for the treatment of corneal endothelial dysfunctions.

  1. The PAXgene(® tissue system preserves phosphoproteins in human tissue specimens and enables comprehensive protein biomarker research.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sibylle Gündisch

    Full Text Available Precise quantitation of protein biomarkers in clinical tissue specimens is a prerequisite for accurate and effective diagnosis, prognosis, and personalized medicine. Although progress is being made, protein analysis from formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded tissues is still challenging. In previous reports, we showed that the novel formalin-free tissue preservation technology, the PAXgene Tissue System, allows the extraction of intact and immunoreactive proteins from PAXgene-fixed and paraffin-embedded (PFPE tissues. In the current study, we focused on the analysis of phosphoproteins and the applicability of two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA to the analysis of a variety of malignant and non-malignant human tissues. Using western blot analysis, we found that phosphoproteins are quantitatively preserved in PFPE tissues, and signal intensities are comparable to that in paired, frozen tissues. Furthermore, proteins extracted from PFPE samples are suitable for 2D-PAGE and can be quantified by ELISA specific for denatured proteins. In summary, the PAXgene Tissue System reliably preserves phosphoproteins in human tissue samples, even after prolonged fixation or stabilization times, and is compatible with methods for protein analysis such as 2D-PAGE and ELISA. We conclude that the PAXgene Tissue System has the potential to serve as a versatile tissue fixative for modern pathology.

  2. Human ribonuclease H1 resolves R-loops and thereby enables progression of the DNA replication fork.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parajuli, Shankar; Teasley, Daniel C; Murali, Bhavna; Jackson, Jessica; Vindigni, Alessandro; Stewart, Sheila A

    2017-09-15

    Faithful DNA replication is essential for genome stability. To ensure accurate replication, numerous complex and redundant replication and repair mechanisms function in tandem with the core replication proteins to ensure DNA replication continues even when replication challenges are present that could impede progression of the replication fork. A unique topological challenge to the replication machinery is posed by RNA-DNA hybrids, commonly referred to as R-loops. Although R-loops play important roles in gene expression and recombination at immunoglobulin sites, their persistence is thought to interfere with DNA replication by slowing or impeding replication fork progression. Therefore, it is of interest to identify DNA-associated enzymes that help resolve replication-impeding R-loops. Here, using DNA fiber analysis, we demonstrate that human ribonuclease H1 (RNH1) plays an important role in replication fork movement in the mammalian nucleus by resolving R-loops. We found that RNH1 depletion results in accumulation of RNA-DNA hybrids, slowing of replication forks, and increased DNA damage. Our data uncovered a role for RNH1 in global DNA replication in the mammalian nucleus. Because accumulation of RNA-DNA hybrids is linked to various human cancers and neurodegenerative disorders, our study raises the possibility that replication fork progression might be impeded, adding to increased genomic instability and contributing to disease. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  3. Behavioral, Neural, and Computational Principles of Bodily Self-Consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanke, Olaf; Slater, Mel; Serino, Andrea

    2015-10-07

    Recent work in human cognitive neuroscience has linked self-consciousness to the processing of multisensory bodily signals (bodily self-consciousness [BSC]) in fronto-parietal cortex and more posterior temporo-parietal regions. We highlight the behavioral, neurophysiological, neuroimaging, and computational laws that subtend BSC in humans and non-human primates. We propose that BSC includes body-centered perception (hand, face, and trunk), based on the integration of proprioceptive, vestibular, and visual bodily inputs, and involves spatio-temporal mechanisms integrating multisensory bodily stimuli within peripersonal space (PPS). We develop four major constraints of BSC (proprioception, body-related visual information, PPS, and embodiment) and argue that the fronto-parietal and temporo-parietal processing of trunk-centered multisensory signals in PPS is of particular relevance for theoretical models and simulations of BSC and eventually of self-consciousness.

  4. Social Consciousness, Education and Transformative Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlidis, Periklis

    2015-01-01

    This paper examines two aspects of social consciousness: consciousness in the sense of knowledge of the objective reality and consciousness in the sense of awareness of oneself as a subject in his/her social ties with other persons-subjects. In the light of such an approach to consciousness in this essay we discuss the importance of education and…

  5. Consciousness, Psychology, and Education: A Speculative Essay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1980

    This monograph explores implications of the psychology of consciousness for education. The psychology of consciousness encompasses the relationships among behavior, experience, and states of consciousness. It is interpreted to include different states of consciousness, paranormal phenomena, mystical experiences, dreams, psychic healing, and other…

  6. Volitional components of consciousness vary across wakefulness, dreaming, and lucid dreaming

    OpenAIRE

    Martin eDresler; Leandra eEibl; Christian FJ Fischer; Renate eWehrle; Spoormaker, Victor I.; Axel eSteiger; Michael eCzisch; Marcel ePawlowski

    2014-01-01

    Consciousness is a multifaceted concept; its different aspects vary across species, vigilance states, or health conditions. While basal aspects of consciousness like perceptions and emotions are present in many states and species, higher-order aspects like reflective or volitional capabilities seem to be most pronounced in awake humans. Here we assess the experience of volition across different states of consciousness: 10 frequent lucid dreamers rated different aspects of volition according t...

  7. Human parvovirus B19 serology and avidity using a combination of recombinant antigens enables a differentiated picture of the current state of infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfrepper, K-I; Enders, M; Motz, M

    2005-01-01

    In order to improve serodiagnostic methods for the determination of the state of human parovirus B19 infection, a new test system, recomLine Parvovirus, based on the use of recombinant antigens, has been developed and evaluated. The test system combines the advantages of enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) methods with those of the Western blot technique. For the recombinant line assay, five antigens of human parvovirus B19 that were recombinantly produced in Escherichia coli were applied directly on nitrocellulose membranes: VP2, the aminoterminal and the carboxyterminal domain of VP1 (VP-N and VP-C), VP-1S another fragment of VP-N and NS1. In addition, empty virus particles isolated from eukaryotic cell cultures were also applied. The recombinant-line assay was used to detect human IgG and IgM antibodies directed against human parvovirus B19. In addition, the avidity of the IgG antibodies was investigated. The recombinant line assay was evaluated using 87 human serum samples of patients recently infected with human parvovirus B19 including 10 samples of three infection time courses and 100 serum samples of healthy blood donors. All results were compared with commercially available ELISAs. In the case of discrepancies, Western blot analysis was performed. The data revealed the recombinant line assay to be highly sensitive and specific. The individual determination of the human immune response against several recombinant antigens covering the structural proteins of human parvovirus B19 gives a deeper insight into the actual status of infection. In addition, the determination of IgG avidity against these individual recombinant antigens enables a more precise and differentiated picture of the infection event.

  8. Correlates of self-consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, R G; Scheier, M F; Carver, C S; Ickes, W

    1978-06-01

    Examined the relationship between the three subscales of the Self-Consciousness Scale and a variety of other personality dimensions, including measures of reflectivity, self-regulation, and social desirability. Data from six geographically diverse samples (total N = 1395) were presented. In general, both the construct validity and discriminant validity of the subscales were supported. First, private self-consciousness significantly correlated with the Guilford-Zimmerman Thoughtfulness Scale and the Paivio Imagery Scale. Second, all of the self-consciousness subscales were shown to be relatively independent of the social desirability response set. Third, less than 6% of the variance in each self-consciousness subscale was shared with scores on the Self-Monitoring Scale. Finally, the minimal relationships between the self-consciousness subscales and measures of emotionality and test anxiety reported by Carver and Glass (1976) were in general replicated. The low magnitude of the correlations obtained was interpreted as supporting the distinctive contribution of the Self-Consciousness Scale to personality assessment.

  9. The human foot and heel–sole–toe walking strategy: a mechanism enabling an inverted pendular gait with low isometric muscle force?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usherwood, J. R.; Channon, A. J.; Myatt, J. P.; Rankin, J. W.; Hubel, T. Y.

    2012-01-01

    Mechanically, the most economical gait for slow bipedal locomotion requires walking as an ‘inverted pendulum’, with: I, an impulsive, energy-dissipating leg compression at the beginning of stance; II, a stiff-limbed vault; and III, an impulsive, powering push-off at the end of stance. The characteristic ‘M’-shaped vertical ground reaction forces of walking in humans reflect this impulse–vault–impulse strategy. Humans achieve this gait by dissipating energy during the heel-to-sole transition in early stance, approximately stiff-limbed, flat-footed vaulting over midstance and ankle plantarflexion (powering the toes down) in late stance. Here, we show that the ‘M’-shaped walking ground reaction force profile does not require the plantigrade human foot or heel–sole–toe stance; it is maintained in tip–toe and high-heel walking as well as in ostriches. However, the unusual, stiff, human foot structure—with ground-contacting heel behind ankle and toes in front—enables both mechanically economical inverted pendular walking and physiologically economical muscle loading, by producing extreme changes in mechanical advantage between muscles and ground reaction forces. With a human foot, and heel–sole–toe strategy during stance, the shin muscles that dissipate energy, or calf muscles that power the push-off, need not be loaded at all—largely avoiding the ‘cost of muscle force’—during the passive vaulting phase. PMID:22572024

  10. The human foot and heel-sole-toe walking strategy: a mechanism enabling an inverted pendular gait with low isometric muscle force?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usherwood, J R; Channon, A J; Myatt, J P; Rankin, J W; Hubel, T Y

    2012-10-07

    Mechanically, the most economical gait for slow bipedal locomotion requires walking as an 'inverted pendulum', with: I, an impulsive, energy-dissipating leg compression at the beginning of stance; II, a stiff-limbed vault; and III, an impulsive, powering push-off at the end of stance. The characteristic 'M'-shaped vertical ground reaction forces of walking in humans reflect this impulse-vault-impulse strategy. Humans achieve this gait by dissipating energy during the heel-to-sole transition in early stance, approximately stiff-limbed, flat-footed vaulting over midstance and ankle plantarflexion (powering the toes down) in late stance. Here, we show that the 'M'-shaped walking ground reaction force profile does not require the plantigrade human foot or heel-sole-toe stance; it is maintained in tip-toe and high-heel walking as well as in ostriches. However, the unusual, stiff, human foot structure--with ground-contacting heel behind ankle and toes in front--enables both mechanically economical inverted pendular walking and physiologically economical muscle loading, by producing extreme changes in mechanical advantage between muscles and ground reaction forces. With a human foot, and heel-sole-toe strategy during stance, the shin muscles that dissipate energy, or calf muscles that power the push-off, need not be loaded at all--largely avoiding the 'cost of muscle force'--during the passive vaulting phase.

  11. TRANSFORMATION OF INDIVIDUAL CONSCIOUSNESS AS AN IMPACT OF MASS CULTURE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dmitry Viktorovich Piatakov

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The article highlights the main directions and consequences of mass culture impact on individual consciousness in the context of functioning of mass society. Based on the analysis of the main approaches to research of the category «mass culture» the author of the article formulates the thesis that the influence of mass culture has a stabilizing effect on public system but it is destructive for individual consciousness, because the reflection of the reality is substituted with its functional perception by the individual.The author considers that mass society has temporal limits whereas the individual consciousness doesn’t have such limits, therefore the effect from the influence of mass culture is prolonged practically for all human life. The author also puts forward the thesis that the impact of mass culture on individual consciousness causes the substitution of traditional values by reduced templates promoted by mass media as «eternal truth».The author of the article believes that mass culture provides individual consciousness with comfortable existence at which it isn't required to seek answers to questions as in mass culture there are no binary schemes and cultural concepts. Such lack of need of a reflection for individual consciousness is pernicious as the person only consuming information doesn't develop as the personality. The author also notes that stabilization of system based on mass culture has the side effect which is reflected in destruction of ability of the individual to critical evaluation of objective reality.

  12. The intersubjective and cooperative origins of consciousness: an evolutionary-developmental approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortina, Mauricio; Liotti, Giovanni

    2010-01-01

    We discuss consciousness from evolutionary and developmental perspectives. The expansion of communicative abilities was a necessary step for the emergence of a new type of cooperation based on equality that probably appeared for the first time among nomadic hunter gatherers during the upper Paleolithic era. In turn, this new level of cooperation gave raise to an expanded form of consciousness. From a developmental perspective an expansion of intersubjective abilities and consciousness go together. Three basic levels of intersubjectivity are present in humans. A primary form of intersubjective communication is accompanied by a primary form of consciousness that is not easily accessible for conscious scrutiny. During the second year of human life secondary forms of intersubjectivity expand consciousness from the immediacy of one-to-one interactions, to include a shared understanding of intentions and goals with caregivers. Secondary forms of intersubjectivity give raise to the type of consciousness characterized by preverbal symbols and images--a primordial form of conceptual knowledge. A further step in intersubjective communication uses the meanings and concepts that have emerged earlier in development and transforms them into words. The leap into language allows our species to conceive past, present, and future simultaneously. The cultural transmission of knowledge and social mores depends on these abilities. This further expands the scope of consciousness and creates conditions for self reflection, a type of consciousness that is uniquely human.

  13. The presence of consciousness in absence seizures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bayne, Tim

    2011-01-01

    This paper examines three respects in which the study of epileptic absence seizures promises to inform our understanding of consciousness. Firstly, it has the potential to bear on debates concerning the behavioural and cognitive functions associated with consciousness. Secondly, it has the potential to illuminate the relationship between background states (or 'levels') of consciousness and the contents of consciousness. Thirdly, it has the potential to bear on our understanding of the unity of consciousness.

  14. Mind-brain and consciousness in psychoanalysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meissner, W W

    2008-01-01

    Understanding how the brain produces conscious mentation is vital to the prospective integration of psychoanalytic and neuroscientific study of the mind-brain relation. This essay explores some of the current opinions, based on recent neuroscientific research, regarding origins of consciousness in the brain. Areas explored include levels of consciousness, waking versus dream consciousness, and issues of consciousness and self-organization in split-brain studies. Some tentative suggestions are made regarding clinical implications of this perspective.

  15. Towards an effective definition of death and disorders of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machado, Calixto; Leisman, Gerry

    2009-01-01

    There exists much controversy in providing an effective definition of human death, largely due to the lack of a rigorous separation and ordered formulation of three distinct elements: a universally accepted definition of death, the medical criterion (anatomical substrata) for determining that death has occurred, and the tests to prove that the criterion has been satisfied. The papers herein review medical standards, philosophical arguments, neurophysiological knowledge, behavioural and cognitive theory and the legal ramifications of the brain-oriented standards of death (whole brain, brainstem and higher brain). The papers examine the notion of connectivities and networks of conscious experience in order to formulate an effective definition of death, based on the basic physiopathological mechanisms of consciousness. We cannot simply differentiate and locate arousal as a function of the ascending reticular activating system, and awareness as a function of the cerebral cortex. Substantial interconnections among the brainstem, subcortical structures, and the neocortex are essential integrating components of human consciousness. This paper attempts to reconcile the brain-oriented standards that are currently inconsistent. The thread of the arguments is the basis for a standard of human death that includes consciousness as the most important function of the body, because it provides the capacity for integrating the functions of the body. The notion of consciousness as the ultimate integrative function is more consistent with the biologically-based systems than the more philosophically-based notions of personhood. Both sides of the argument are presented herein.

  16. High hydrostatic pressure enables almost 100% refolding of recombinant human ciliary neurotrophic factor from inclusion bodies at high concentration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qi; Liu, Yongdong; Zhang, Chun; Guo, Fangxia; Feng, Cui; Li, Xiunan; Shi, Hong; Su, Zhiguo

    2017-05-01

    Protein refolding from inclusion bodies (IBs) often encounters a problem of low recovery at high protein concentration. In this study, we demonstrated that high hydrostatic pressure (HHP) could simultaneously achieve high refolding concentration and high refolding yield for IBs of recombinant human ciliary neurotrophic factor (rhCNTF), a potential therapeutic for neurodegenerative diseases. The use of dilution refolding obtained 18% recovery at 3 mg/mL, even in the presence of 4 M urea. In contrast, HHP refolding could efficiently increase the recovery up to almost 100% even at 4 mg/mL. It was found that in the dilution, hydrophobic aggregates were the off-path products and their amount increased with the protein concentration. However, HHP could effectively minimize the formation of hydrophobic aggregates, leading to almost complete conversion of the rhCNTF IBs to the correct configuration. The stable operation range of concentration is 0.5-4.0 mg/mL, in which the refolding yield was almost 100%. Compared with the literatures where HHP failed to increase the refolding yield beyond 90%, the reason could be attributed to the structural difference that rhCNTF has no disulfide bond and is a monomeric protein. After purification by one-step of anionic chromatography, the purity of rhCNTF reached 95% with total process recovery of 54.1%. The purified rhCNTF showed similar structure and in vitro bioactivity to the native species. The whole process featured integration of solubilization/refolding, a high refolding yield of 100%, a high concentration of 4 mg/mL, and a simple chromatography to ensure a high productivity. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Intrinsic brain activity in altered states of consciousness: how conscious is the default mode of brain function?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boly, M; Phillips, C; Tshibanda, L; Vanhaudenhuyse, A; Schabus, M; Dang-Vu, T T; Moonen, G; Hustinx, R; Maquet, P; Laureys, S

    2008-01-01

    Spontaneous brain activity has recently received increasing interest in the neuroimaging community. However, the value of resting-state studies to a better understanding of brain-behavior relationships has been challenged. That altered states of consciousness are a privileged way to study the relationships between spontaneous brain activity and behavior is proposed, and common resting-state brain activity features observed in various states of altered consciousness are reviewed. Early positron emission tomography studies showed that states of extremely low or high brain activity are often associated with unconsciousness. However, this relationship is not absolute, and the precise link between global brain metabolism and awareness remains yet difficult to assert. In contrast, voxel-based analyses identified a systematic impairment of associative frontoparieto-cingulate areas in altered states of consciousness, such as sleep, anesthesia, coma, vegetative state, epileptic loss of consciousness, and somnambulism. In parallel, recent functional magnetic resonance imaging studies have identified structured patterns of slow neuronal oscillations in the resting human brain. Similar coherent blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) systemwide patterns can also be found, in particular in the default-mode network, in several states of unconsciousness, such as coma, anesthesia, and slow-wave sleep. The latter results suggest that slow coherent spontaneous BOLD fluctuations cannot be exclusively a reflection of conscious mental activity, but may reflect default brain connectivity shaping brain areas of most likely interactions in a way that transcends levels of consciousness, and whose functional significance remains largely in the dark.

  18. Conscious attention, meditation, and bilateral information transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bob, Petr; Zimmerman, Elizabeth M; Hamilton, Elizabeth A; Sheftel, Jenna G; Bajo, Stephanie D; Raboch, Jiri; Golla, Megan; Konopka, Lukasz M

    2013-01-01

    Recent findings indicate that conscious attention is related to large-scale information integration of various brain regions, including both hemispheres, that enables integration of parallel distributed modalities of processed information. There is also evidence that the level of information transference related to integration or splitting among brain regions, and between hemispheres, establishes a certain level of efficiency of the information processing. The level of information transference also may have modulatory influences on attentional capacity that are closely linked to the emotional arousal and autonomic response related to a stimulus. These findings suggest a hypothesis that changes in conscious attention, specifically during meditation could be reflected in the autonomic activity as the left-right information transference calculated from bilateral electrodermal activity (EDA). With the aim to compare conscious attention during meditation with other attentional states (resting state, Stroop task, and memory task), we performed bilateral EDA measurement in 7 healthy persons during resting state, Stroop task, neurofeedback memory test, and meditation. The results indicate that the information transference (ie, transinformation) is able to distinguish those attentional states, and that the highest level of the transinformation has been found during attentional processing related to meditation, indicating higher level of connectivity between left and right sides. Calculations other than pointwise transinformation (PTI) performed on EDA records, such as mean skin conductance level or laterality index, were not able to distinguish attentional states. The results suggest that PTI may present an interesting method useful for the assessment of information flow, related to neural functioning, that in the case of meditation may reflect typical integrative changes in the autonomic nervous system related to brain functions and focused attentional processing.

  19. Autonoetic consciousness: Reconsidering the role of episodic memory in future-oriented self-projection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Stanley B

    2016-01-01

    Following the seminal work of Ingvar (1985. "Memory for the future": An essay on the temporal organization of conscious awareness. Human Neurobiology, 4, 127-136), Suddendorf (1994. The discovery of the fourth dimension: Mental time travel and human evolution. Master's thesis. University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand), and Tulving (1985. Memory and consciousness. Canadian Psychology/PsychologieCanadienne, 26, 1-12), exploration of the ability to anticipate and prepare for future contingencies that cannot be known with certainty has grown into a thriving research enterprise. A fundamental tenet of this line of inquiry is that future-oriented mental time travel, in most of its presentations, is underwritten by a property or an extension of episodic recollection. However, a careful conceptual analysis of exactly how episodic memory functions in this capacity has yet to be undertaken. In this paper I conduct such an analysis. Based on conceptual, phenomenological, and empirical considerations, I conclude that the autonoetic component of episodic memory, not episodic memory per se, is the causally determinative factor enabling an individual to project him or herself into a personal future.

  20. Haunted by the ghost in the machine. Commentary on "The spirituality of human consciousness: a Catholic evaluation of some current neuro-scientific interpretations".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, James B

    2012-09-01

    Metaphysical and epistemological dualism informs much contemporary discussion of the relationships of science and religion, in particular in relation to the neurosciences and the religious understanding of the human person. This dualism is a foundational artifact of modern culture; however, contemporary scientific research and historical theological scholarship encourage a more holistic view wherein human personhood is most fittingly understood as an emergent phenomenon of, but not simply reducible to, evolutionary and developmental neurobiology.

  1. Proposal for an Approach to Artificial Consciousness Based on Self-Consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    Menant, Mr Christophe

    2007-01-01

    Current research on artificial consciousness is focused on phenomenal consciousness and on functional consciousness. We propose to shift the focus to self-consciousness in order to open new areas of investigation. We use an existing scenario where self-consciousness is considered as the result of an evolution of representations. Application of the scenario to the possible build up of a conscious robot also introduces questions relative to emotions in robots. Areas of investigation...

  2. Edmund Husserl's theory of image consciousness, aesthetic consciousness, and art

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    The central theme of my dissertation is Husserl’s phenomenological analysis of how we experience images. The aim of my dissertation is twofold: 1) to offer a contribution to the understanding of Husserl’s theory of image consciousness, aesthetic consciousness and art, and 2) to find out whether Husserl’s theory of the experience of images is applicable to modern and contemporary art, particularly to strongly site-specific art, unaided ready-mades, and contemporary films and theatre plays in w...

  3. The Role of Consciousness in Interpersonal Communication: Pedagogical Implications for the Introductory Course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DiSanza, James R.

    This paper argues that introductory interpersonal courses cannot facilitate competent interaction if they fail to take account of the limitations of human consciousness. The paper focuses on Gregory Bateson's communication and learning theory, and explores the problems of being overly conscious of interpersonal interaction. The paper proposes a…

  4. Educational Imperatives of the Evolution of Consciousness: The Integral Visions of Rudolf Steiner and Ken Wilber

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gidley, Jennifer M.

    2007-01-01

    Rudolf Steiner and Ken Wilber claim that human consciousness is evolving beyond the "formal", abstract, intellectual mode toward a "post-formal", integral mode. Wilber calls this "vision-logic" and Steiner calls it "consciousness/spiritual soul". Both point to the emergence of more complex, dialectical,…

  5. Computer Security Systems Enable Access.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riggen, Gary

    1989-01-01

    A good security system enables access and protects information from damage or tampering, but the most important aspects of a security system aren't technical. A security procedures manual addresses the human element of computer security. (MLW)

  6. Consciousness is still in business.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guterman, Yossi

    2010-06-01

    In a recent study (Hassin, Bargh, Engell, & McCulloch, 2009, Exp. 4) half of the participants were informed ofthe occasional occurrence of location regularities (patterns) in visual stimulus sets, while the other half was not. Evidence was presented to the effect that uninformed participants extracted the patterns from the displays better than the informed participants. The authors interpret their finding as demonstrating that working memory (WM) can operate non-consciously. However, inspection of the data suggests that rather than being more effective than the informed participants in extracting patterns, uninformed participants were more strongly affected by the "Broken Patterns" that served as misleading cues. Thus whereas the findings may support the possibility of non-conscious operation of low level WM functions, they nevertheless underscore the importance of conscious awareness as far as higher level functions are concerned. 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. How to Assess Ictal Consciousness?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mirja Johanson

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Despite the complexity and methodological difficulties in defining the concept of consciousness, it is a central concept in epileptology, and should thus be tractable for scientific analysis. In the present article, a two-dimensional model consisting of concepts related to the level and the contents of consciousness will be presented. This model has been found to be well suited for the description of seizure-induced alterations of consciousness, and is supported both by findings from neuroimaging and electrophysiological studies as well as from phenomenological studies. Further, we will review both traditional introspective methods as well as methods that have recently been developed or utilized in epilepsy research, summarize the main findings concerning first person experiences during epileptic seizures acquired with some of these methods, and discuss their strengths and weaknesses.

  8. Paranoia and self-consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenigstein, A; Vanable, P A

    1992-01-01

    A new instrument designed to assess paranoid thought in college students, together with reliability and validity data, was presented in Study 1. A single general factor accounted for a substantial portion of the variance in the full scale. Public self-consciousness was consistently and significantly correlated with the present measure of paranoia. In Study 2, both pretested paranoia and public self-consciousness were related to feelings of being watched (a classical manifestation of paranoia), although public self-consciousness had an effect only when there was a 2-way mirror present. In Study 3, self-attention, experimentally induced using a story construction task, again resulted in a heightened sense of being observed. Discussion focuses on paranoid cognition as characteristic of everyday thought and the implications of self-attention for social perception processes.

  9. Neural correlates of consciousness reconsidered.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neisser, Joseph

    2012-06-01

    It is widely accepted among philosophers that neuroscientists are conducting a search for the neural correlates of consciousness, or NCC. Chalmers (2000) conceptualized this research program as the attempt to correlate the contents of conscious experience with the contents of representations in specific neural populations. A notable claim on behalf of this interpretation is that the neutral language of "correlates" frees us from philosophical disputes over the mind/body relation, allowing the science to move independently. But the experimental paradigms and explanatory canons of neuroscience are not neutral about the mechanical relation between consciousness and the brain. I argue that NCC research is best characterized as an attempt to locate a causally relevant neural mechanism and not as an effort to identify a discrete neural representation, the content of which correlates with some actual experience. It might be said that the first C in "NCC" should stand for "causes" rather than "correlates."

  10. Targeted Mass Spectrometry Approach Enabled Discovery of O-Glycosylated Insulin and Related Signaling Peptides in Mouse and Human Pancreatic Islets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Qing; Canales, Alejandra; Glover, Matthew S; Das, Rahul; Shi, Xudong; Liu, Yang; Keller, Mark P; Attie, Alan D; Li, Lingjun

    2017-08-07

    O-Linked glycosylation often involves the covalent attachment of sugar moieties to the hydroxyl group of serine or threonine on proteins/peptides. Despite growing interest in glycoproteins, little attention has been directed to glycosylated signaling peptides, largely due to lack of enabling analytical tools. Here we explore the occurrence of naturally O-linked glycosylation on the signaling peptides extracted from mouse and human pancreatic islets using mass spectrometry (MS). A novel targeted MS-based method is developed to increase the likelihood of capturing these modified signaling peptides and to provide improved sequence coverage and accurate glycosite localization, enabling the first large-scale discovery of O-glycosylation on signaling peptides. Several glycosylated signaling peptides with multiple glycoforms are identified, including the first report of glycosylated insulin-B chain and insulin-C peptide and BigLEN. This discovery may reveal potential novel functions as glycosylation could influence their conformation and biostability. Given the importance of insulin and its related peptide hormones and previous studies of glycosylated insulin analogues, this natural glycosylation may provide important insights into diabetes research and therapeutic treatments.

  11. Reading embodied consciousness in "Emma".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harbus, Antonina

    2011-01-01

    The language of Emma (1815) reflects Jane Austen's developing view of embodied consciousness and her particular interest in this novel in the physical manifestations of emotions, such as blushes and nervous responses. The discursive exploration of the inner life in Emma is the product of a cultural context that features emerging brain science and Austen's own conceptualization of the psychophysical nature of emotions. This article analyzes the language of mind and emotion in Emma, to contend that Austen grapples with the implications of the idea of embodied consciousness in a narrative that contrasts mind reading with interpreting the body.

  12. 汉代审美意识的嬗变:从“天人之美”到“人和之美”%On the Transformation of Aesthetic Consciousness in Han Dynasty: from "Beauty of Heaven and Human" to "Beauty of Harmonious Human"

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    谢雪莲

    2012-01-01

    从现存可见的文学艺术来看,“汉代的艺术是人的艺术”;汉代的思想是尊重人重视人的。“天人之美”主要是西汉时的美学风格,也是汉儒阐释“六经”的美学追求;“人和之美”涵盖了东汉中晚期的艺术特征,是文艺走向自觉的开始。如果说,汉代人对经学的阐释是发现自我,那么汉代书法就是汉人与自然的真正交流见证。人的自然化、自然化的人,二者水乳交融却是以汉代审美意识的整合开始的。%Looking from the existent literary and artistic points, "the arts of the Han Dynasty were the arts of human". The thoughts of the Han Dynasty emphasized their respect to human beings. "The beauty of heaven and human" was the aesthetic style of the Western Han Dynasty as well as the aesthetic pursuit with which the Han Confucians expounded the "six Classic Works"; whereas, "the beauty of harmonious human" covered the artistic characteristics of the middle and late period of the Eastern Han Dynasty, which was the beginning of the art and literature to self-consciousness. If the explanation of the classic works by scholars of the Han Dynasty was a path to discover selfhood, the calligraphy of the Han Dynasty was a real witness to watch the communication of human and nature. The melting of the human naturalization and naturalized human started the aesthetic consciousness of the Han Dynasty.

  13. The Human Consciousness and Feminism in the James Cameron’ s Movies%论詹姆斯·卡梅隆电影中的人文意识和女性主义

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    胡畔畔

    2014-01-01

    James Cameron is Hollywood’ s premier famous director, in his film long cultural awareness and women thought of showing his film to become an important force to promote social harmony and development of the feminist movement, feminist ideas of James from the beginning of another to mature, has his own unique characteristics. His human consciousness is in his mature which more and more fascinating it.%作为好莱坞中具有的著名导演詹姆斯·卡梅隆的电影中时常显现出人文意识和女性思想,他的电影成为推动社会和谐以及女性主义运动发展的重要力量,詹姆斯的女性主义思想从初现端倪到走向成熟,有着拨乱反正、重塑女性形象的历史意义。他的人文意识也在他对环境和人道主义的关心中走向成熟。

  14. Wundt, Vygotsky and Bandura: a cultural-historical science of consciousness in three acts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Michel; Robinson, David K; Yasnitsky, Anton

    2010-01-01

    This article looks at three historical efforts to coordinate the scientific study of biological and cultural aspects of human consciousness into a single comprehensive theory of human development that includes the evolution of the human body, cultural evolution and personal development: specifically, the research programs of Wilhelm Wundt, Lev Vygotsky and Albert Bandura. The lack of historical relations between these similar efforts is striking, and suggests that the effort to promote cultural and personal sources of consciousness arises as a natural foil to an overemphasis on the biological basis of consciousness, sometimes associated with biological determinism.

  15. Consciousness and quantum mechanics life in parallel worlds

    CERN Document Server

    Mensky, Michael B

    2010-01-01

    The phenomenon of consciousness includes mysterious aspects providing a basis for many spiritual doctrines (including religions) and psychological practices. These directions of human knowledge are usually considered to contradict the laws of science. However, quantum mechanics - in a sense, the mysterious direction of science - allows us to include the phenomena of consciousness and life as well as the relevant phenomena in the sphere of science. Wolfgang Pauli, one of the pioneers of quantum mechanics, together with great psychologist Carl Gustav Jung, guessed about the relation between quan

  16. The Distribution of Consciousness: A Difficult Cartesian Chart

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcello Massimini

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available If we were asked to draw a graph to represent the distribution of consciousness in the world around us (from dolphins to honeybees based on objective criteria, we would definitely be in trouble. The two objective parameters that have been traditionally considered as a guide – the complexity of behavior and brain size – lead to paradoxical conclusions and turn out to be unsatisfactory, to say the least. We need to find novel, reliable metrics. However, these can be identified, validated and calibrated only if we first tackle seriously the problem of recognizing consciousness in our fellow humans, a task which is far from being obvious.

  17. Noise during rest enables the exploration of the brain's dynamic repertoire.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anandamohan Ghosh

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Traditionally brain function is studied through measuring physiological responses in controlled sensory, motor, and cognitive paradigms. However, even at rest, in the absence of overt goal-directed behavior, collections of cortical regions consistently show temporally coherent activity. In humans, these resting state networks have been shown to greatly overlap with functional architectures present during consciously directed activity, which motivates the interpretation of rest activity as day dreaming, free association, stream of consciousness, and inner rehearsal. In monkeys, it has been shown though that similar coherent fluctuations are present during deep anesthesia when there is no consciousness. Here, we show that comparable resting state networks emerge from a stability analysis of the network dynamics using biologically realistic primate brain connectivity, although anatomical information alone does not identify the network. We specifically demonstrate that noise and time delays via propagation along connecting fibres are essential for the emergence of the coherent fluctuations of the default network. The spatiotemporal network dynamics evolves on multiple temporal scales and displays the intermittent neuroelectric oscillations in the fast frequency regimes, 1-100 Hz, commonly observed in electroencephalographic and magnetoencephalographic recordings, as well as the hemodynamic oscillations in the ultraslow regimes, <0.1 Hz, observed in functional magnetic resonance imaging. The combination of anatomical structure and time delays creates a space-time structure in which the neural noise enables the brain to explore various functional configurations representing its dynamic repertoire.

  18. Consciousness from the ground up

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lloyd, Seth

    2013-05-01

    The book Physics in Mind: a Quantum View of the Brain certainly aims high. Written by the eminent biophysicist Werner Loewenstein, its goal is nothing less than a theory that explains our sense of conscious existence, built from the bottom up.

  19. Trigeminovascular stimulation in conscious rats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kemper, RHA; Meijler, WJ; TerHorst, GJ

    1997-01-01

    INTRACISTERNAL infusion of capsaicin was used to induce intracranial trigeminovascular stimulation in conscious rats. Both behaviour and trigeminal nucleus caudalis c-fos expression were examined. Exploratory behaviour was dose-dependently reduced and different types of behaviours were induced with

  20. Self-Consciousness, Caring, Relationality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Montes Sanchez, Alba

    In the studies of emotion, shame is classified under several labels: a self-conscious emotion, an emotion of self-assessment, a social emotion, and a moral emotion. All of them are supposed to pick out a defining characteristic of shame. Though all of these labels will be under scrutiny at some...

  1. The Awakening of Feminist Consciousness

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    熊江

    2013-01-01

    Virginia Woolf in her great novel To the Lighthouse shows her deep concern for women. In this book, she discusses women’s spiritual world and the process of the awakening of feminist consciousness, which is represented by Mrs. Ramsay and Lily Briscoe.

  2. Self-Consciousness, Caring, Relationality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Montes Sanchez, Alba

    In the studies of emotion, shame is classified under several labels: a self-conscious emotion, an emotion of self-assessment, a social emotion, and a moral emotion. All of them are supposed to pick out a defining characteristic of shame. Though all of these labels will be under scrutiny at some p...

  3. Consciousness, cognition and the cognitive apparatus in the vedānta tradition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balasubramanian, R

    2011-01-01

    A human being is a complex entity consisting of the Self (also known as Consciousness), mind, senses and the body. The Vedānta tradition holds that the mind, the senses and the body are essentially different from the Self or Consciousness. It is through consciousness that we are able to know the things of the world, making use of the medium of the mind and the senses. Furthermore, the mind, though material, is able to reveal things, borrowing the light from consciousness. From the phenomenological point of view, we have to answer the following questions: how does one know the mind/the mental operations/the cogitations of the mind? Does the mind know itself? Is it possible? There is, again, the problem of the intentionality of consciousness. Is consciousness intentional? According to Vedānta, consciousness by its very nature is not intentional, but it becomes intentional through the mind. The mind or the ego is not part of the consciousness; on the contrary, it is transcendent to consciousness. It is difficult to spell out the relation between consciousness and the mind. How does consciousness, which is totally different from the mind, get related to the mind in such a way that it makes the latter capable of comprehending the things of the world? The Vedānta tradition provides the answer to this question in terms of the knower-known relation. Consciousness is pure light, self-luminous by its very nature, that is, although it reveals other objects, it is not revealed by anything else. When Sartre describes it as nothingness, bereft of even ego, it is to show that it is pure light revealing objects outside it.

  4. Consciousness, cognition and the cognitive apparatus in the Vedānta tradition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Balasubramanian R

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available A human being is a complex entity consisting of the Self (also known as Consciousness, mind, senses and the body. The Vedānta tradition holds that the mind, the senses and the body are essentially different from the Self or Consciousness. It is through consciousness that we are able to know the things of the world, making use of the medium of the mind and the senses. Furthermore, the mind, though material, is able to reveal things, borrowing the light from consciousness. From the phenomenological point of view, we have to answer the following questions: how does one know the mind/the mental operations/the cogitations of the mind? Does the mind know itself? Is it possible? There is, again, the problem of the intentionality of consciousness. Is consciousness intentional? According to Vedānta, consciousness by its very nature is not intentional, but it becomes intentional through the mind. The mind or the ego is not part of the consciousness; on the contrary, it is transcendent to consciousness. It is difficult to spell out the relation between consciousness and the mind. How does consciousness, which is totally different from the mind, get related to the mind in such a way that it makes the latter capable of comprehending the things of the world? The Vedānta tradition provides the answer to this question in terms of the knower-known relation. Consciousness is pure light, self-luminous by its very nature, that is, although it reveals other objects, it is not revealed by anything else. When Sartre describes it as nothingness, bereft of even ego, it is to show that it is pure light revealing objects outside it.

  5. Light-sheet Bayesian microscopy enables deep-cell super-resolution imaging of heterochromatin in live human embryonic stem cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Ying S; Zhu, Quan; Elkins, Keri; Tse, Kevin; Li, Yu; Fitzpatrick, James A J; Verma, Inder M; Cang, Hu

    2016-01-01

    Background Heterochromatin in the nucleus of human embryonic cells plays an important role in the epigenetic regulation of gene expression. The architecture of heterochromatin and its dynamic organization remain elusive because of the lack of fast and high-resolution deep-cell imaging tools. We enable this task by advancing instrumental and algorithmic implementation of the localization-based super-resolution technique. Results We present light-sheet Bayesian super-resolution microscopy (LSBM). We adapt light-sheet illumination for super-resolution imaging by using a novel prism-coupled condenser design to illuminate a thin slice of the nucleus with high signal-to-noise ratio. Coupled with a Bayesian algorithm that resolves overlapping fluorophores from high-density areas, we show, for the first time, nanoscopic features of the heterochromatin structure in both fixed and live human embryonic stem cells. The enhanced temporal resolution allows capturing the dynamic change of heterochromatin with a lateral resolution of 50–60 nm on a time scale of 2.3 s. Conclusion Light-sheet Bayesian microscopy opens up broad new possibilities of probing nanometer-scale nuclear structures and real-time sub-cellular processes and other previously difficult-to-access intracellular regions of living cells at the single-molecule, and single cell level.

  6. Conscious Willing and the Emerging Sciences of Brain and Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connor, Timothy

    Recent studies within neuroscience and cognitive psychology have explored the place of conscious willing in the generation of purposive action. Some have argued that certain findings indicate that the commonsensical view that we con trol many of our actions through conscious willing is largely or wholly illusory. I rebut such arguments, contending that they typically rest on a conflation of distinct phenomena. Nevertheless, I also suggest that traditional philosophical accounts of the will need to be revised: a raft of studies indicate that control over one's own will among human beings is limited, fragile, and - insofar as control depends to an extent on conscious knowledge - admitting of degrees. I briefly sketch several dimensions along which freedom of the will may vary over time and across agents.

  7. Video ergo sum: manipulating bodily self-consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenggenhager, Bigna; Tadi, Tej; Metzinger, Thomas; Blanke, Olaf

    2007-08-24

    Humans normally experience the conscious self as localized within their bodily borders. This spatial unity may break down in certain neurological conditions such as out-of-body experiences, leading to a striking disturbance of bodily self-consciousness. On the basis of these clinical data, we designed an experiment that uses conflicting visual-somatosensory input in virtual reality to disrupt the spatial unity between the self and the body. We found that during multisensory conflict, participants felt as if a virtual body seen in front of them was their own body and mislocalized themselves toward the virtual body, to a position outside their bodily borders. Our results indicate that spatial unity and bodily self-consciousness can be studied experimentally and are based on multisensory and cognitive processing of bodily information.

  8. The Presence of Consciousness in Absence Seizures

    OpenAIRE

    Tim Bayne

    2011-01-01

    This paper examines three respects in which the study of epileptic absence seizures promises to inform our understanding of consciousness. Firstly, it has the potential to bear on debates concerning the behavioural and cognitive functions associated with consciousness. Secondly, it has the potential to illuminate the relationship between background states (or ‘levels’) of consciousness and the contents of consciousness. Thirdly, it has the potential to bear on our understanding of the unity o...

  9. Consciousness without a cortex, but what kind of consciousness is this? [editorial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Coenen, A.M.L.

    2007-01-01

    Merker suggests that the thalamocortical system is not an essential system for consciousness, but, instead, that the midbrain reticular system is responsible for consciousness. Indeed, the latter is a crucial system for consciousness, when consciousness is regarded as the waking state. However, when

  10. 8 Questions About the Conscious Mind

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dooremalen, A.J.P.W.

    2014-01-01

    Can the mind function separately from the brain? Can machines have conscious minds? Is Google Maps part of the conscious mind? Hans Dooremalen provides answers to these three and five other questions about the conscious mind in an easy to read introduction to the philosophy of mind.

  11. Self-Consciousness and Aspects of Identity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheek, Jonathan M.; Briggs, Stephen R.

    1982-01-01

    Investigated the relationship between public and private self-consciousness and social and personal aspects of identity. Public self-consciousness correlated more strongly with social than with personal aspects of identity, and private self-consciousness correlated more strongly with personal than with social aspects. Discusses implications for…

  12. Towards an integrative theory of consciousness: Part 2 (An anthology of various other models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Avinash De Sousa

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The study of consciousness has today moved beyond neurobiology and cognitive models. In the past few years, there has been a surge of research into various newer areas. The present article looks at the non-neurobiological and non-cognitive theories regarding this complex phenomenon, especially ones that self-psychology, self-theory, artificial intelligence, quantum physics, visual cognitive science and philosophy have to offer. Self-psychology has proposed the need to understand the self and its development, and the ramifications of the self for morality and empathy, which will help us understand consciousness better. There have been inroads made from the fields of computer science, machine technology and artificial intelligence, including robotics, into understanding the consciousness of these machines and their implications for human consciousness. These areas are explored. Visual cortex and emotional theories along with their implications are discussed. The phylogeny and evolution of the phenomenon of consciousness is also highlighted, with theories on the emergence of consciousness in fetal and neonatal life. Quantum physics and its insights into the mind, along with the implications of consciousness and physics and their interface are debated. The role of neurophilosophy to understand human consciousness, the functions of such a concept, embodiment, the dark side of consciousness, future research needs and limitations of a scientific theory of consciousness complete the review. The importance and salient features of each theory are discussed along with certain pitfalls, if present. A need for the integration of various theories to understand consciousness from a holistic perspective is stressed.

  13. Towards An Integrative Theory Of Consciousness: Part 2 (An Anthology Of Various Other Models)

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Sousa, Avinash

    2013-01-01

    The study of consciousness has today moved beyond neurobiology and cognitive models. In the past few years, there has been a surge of research into various newer areas. The present article looks at the non-neurobiological and non-cognitive theories regarding this complex phenomenon, especially ones that self-psychology, self-theory, artificial intelligence, quantum physics, visual cognitive science and philosophy have to offer. Self-psychology has proposed the need to understand the self and its development, and the ramifications of the self for morality and empathy, which will help us understand consciousness better. There have been inroads made from the fields of computer science, machine technology and artificial intelligence, including robotics, into understanding the consciousness of these machines and their implications for human consciousness. These areas are explored. Visual cortex and emotional theories along with their implications are discussed. The phylogeny and evolution of the phenomenon of consciousness is also highlighted, with theories on the emergence of consciousness in fetal and neonatal life. Quantum physics and its insights into the mind, along with the implications of consciousness and physics and their interface are debated. The role of neurophilosophy to understand human consciousness, the functions of such a concept, embodiment, the dark side of consciousness, future research needs and limitations of a scientific theory of consciousness complete the review. The importance and salient features of each theory are discussed along with certain pitfalls, if present. A need for the integration of various theories to understand consciousness from a holistic perspective is stressed. PMID:23678242

  14. Conscious Thought Does Not Guide Moment-to-Moment Actions – It Serves Social and Cultural Functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. J. eMasicampo

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Humans enjoy a private, mental life that is richer and more vivid than that of any other animal. Yet as central as the conscious experience is to human life, numerous disciplines have long struggled to explain it. The present paper reviews the latest theories and evidence from psychology that addresses what conscious thought is and how it affects human behavior. We suggest that conscious thought adapts human behavior to life in complex society and culture. First, we review research challenging the common notion that conscious thought directly guides and controls action. Second, we present an alternative view—that conscious thought processes actions and events that are typically removed from the here and now, and that it indirectly shapes action to favor culturally adaptive responses. Third, we summarize recent empirical work on conscious thought, which generally supports this alternative view. We see conscious thought as the place where the unconscious mind assembles ideas so as to reach new conclusions about how best to behave, or what outcomes to pursue or avoid. Rather than directly controlling action, conscious thought provides the input from these kinds of mental simulations to the executive. Conscious thought offers insights about the past and future, socially shared information, and cultural rules. Without it, the complex forms of social and cultural coordination that define human life would not be possible.

  15. Coma and consciousness: paradigms (re)framed by neuroimaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laureys, Steven; Schiff, Nicholas D

    2012-06-01

    The past 15 years have provided an unprecedented collection of discoveries that bear upon our scientific understanding of recovery of consciousness in the human brain following severe brain damage. Highlighted among these discoveries are unique demonstrations that patients with little or no behavioral evidence of conscious awareness may retain critical cognitive capacities and the first scientific demonstrations that some patients, with severely injured brains and very longstanding conditions of limited behavioral responsiveness, may nonetheless harbor latent capacities for significant recovery. Included among such capacities are particularly human functions of language and higher-level cognition that either spontaneously or through direct interventions may reemerge even at long time intervals or remain unrecognized. Collectively, these observations have reframed scientific inquiry and further led to important new insights into mechanisms underlying consciousness in the human brain. These studies support a model of consciousness as the emergent property of the collective behavior of widespread frontoparietal network connectivity modulated by specific forebrain circuit mechanisms. We here review these advances in measurement and the scientific and broader implications of this rapidly progressing field of research.

  16. Upregulation of CC Chemokine Receptor 7 (CCR7) Enables Migration of Xenogeneic Human Adipose-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells to Rat Secondary Lymphoid Organs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Tian; Luan, Shao-Liang; Huang, Hong; Sun, Xing-Kun; Yang, Yan-Mei; Zhang, Hui; Han, Wei-Dong; Li, Hong; Han, Yan

    2016-12-30

    BACKGROUND CC chemokine receptor 7 (CCR7) expression is vital for cell migration to secondary lymphoid organs (SLOs). Our previous work showed that inducing CCR7 expression enabled syngeneic mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) to migrate into SLOs, resulting in enhanced immunosuppressive performance in mice. Given that human adipose-derived stem cells (hASCs) are widely used in clinical therapy, we further investigated whether upregulation of CCR7 enables xenogeneic hASCs to migrate to rat SLOs. MATERIAL AND METHODS hASCs rarely express CCR7; therefore, hASCs were transfected with lentivirus encoding rat CCR7 (rCCR7) plus green fluorescence protein (GFP) or GFP alone. CCR7 mRNA and cell surface expression of rCCR7-hASCs and GFP-hASCs were examined by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and flow cytometry (FCM), respectively. The phenotype, differentiation, and proliferation capacity of each cell type was also determined. To examine migration, rCCR7-hASCs and GFP-hASCs were injected intravenously into Lewis rats, and the proportion of GFP-positive cells in the spleen and lymph nodes was determined with FCM. RESULTS mRNA and cell surface protein expression of CCR7 was essentially undetectable in hASCs and GFP-ASCs; however, CCR7 was highly expressed in rCCR7-ASCs. rCCR7-hASCs, GFP-hASCs, and hASCs shared a similar immunophenotype, and maintained the ability of multilineage differentiation and proliferation. In addition, the average proportion of GFP-positive cells was significantly higher following transplantation of rCCR7-hASCs compared with GFP-hASCs (p<0.01). CONCLUSIONS These results suggest that upregulation of rat CCR7 expression does not change the phenotype, differentiation, or proliferation capacity of hASCs, but does enable efficient migration of hASCs to rat SLOs.

  17. Brain function assessment in different conscious states.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozgoren, Murat; Bayazit, Onur; Kocaaslan, Sibel; Gokmen, Necati; Oniz, Adile

    2010-06-03

    The study of brain functioning is a major challenge in neuroscience fields as human brain has a dynamic and ever changing information processing. Case is worsened with conditions where brain undergoes major changes in so-called different conscious states. Even though the exact definition of consciousness is a hard one, there are certain conditions where the descriptions have reached a consensus. The sleep and the anesthesia are different conditions which are separable from each other and also from wakefulness. The aim of our group has been to tackle the issue of brain functioning with setting up similar research conditions for these three conscious states. In order to achieve this goal we have designed an auditory stimulation battery with changing conditions to be recorded during a 40 channel EEG polygraph (Nuamps) session. The stimuli (modified mismatch, auditory evoked etc.) have been administered both in the operation room and the sleep lab via Embedded Interactive Stimulus Unit which was developed in our lab. The overall study has provided some results for three domains of consciousness. In order to be able to monitor the changes we have incorporated Bispectral Index Monitoring to both sleep and anesthesia conditions. The first stage results have provided a basic understanding in these altered states such that auditory stimuli have been successfully processed in both light and deep sleep stages. The anesthesia provides a sudden change in brain responsiveness; therefore a dosage dependent anesthetic administration has proved to be useful. The auditory processing was exemplified targeting N1 wave, with a thorough analysis from spectrogram to sLORETA. The frequency components were observed to be shifting throughout the stages. The propofol administration and the deeper sleep stages both resulted in the decreasing of N1 component. The sLORETA revealed similar activity at BA7 in sleep (BIS 70) and target propofol concentration of 1.2 microg/mL. The current study

  18. How and to what end may consciousness contribute to action? Attributing properties of consciousness to an embodied, minimally cognitive artificial neural network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holk eCruse

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available An artificial neural network called reaCog is described which is based on a decentralized, reactive and embodied architecture to control non-trivial hexapod walking in unpredictable environment (Walknet as well as insect-like navigation (Navinet. In reaCog, these basic networks are extended in such a way that the complete system, reaCog, adopts the capability of inventing new behaviors and - via internal simulation - of planning ahead. This cognitive expansion enables the reactive system to be enriched with additional procedures. Here, we focus on the question to what extent properties of phenomena to be characterized on a different level of description as for example consciousness can be found in this minimally cognitive system. Adopting a monist view, we argue that the phenomenal aspect of mental phenomena can be neglected when discussing the function of such a system. Under this condition, reaCog is discussed to be equipped with properties as are bottom-up and top-down attention, intentions, volition and some aspects of Access Consciousness. These properties have not been explicitly implemented but emerge from the cooperation between the elements of the network. The aspects of access consciousness found in reaCog concern the above mentioned ability to plan ahead and to invent and guide (new actions. Furthermore, global accessibility of memory elements, another aspect characterizing Access Consciousness is realized by this network. reaCog allows for both reactive/automatic control and (access- conscious control of behavior. We discuss examples for interactions between both the reactive domain and the conscious domain. Metacognition or Reflexive Consciousness is not a property of reaCog. Possible expansions are discussed to allow for further properties of Access Consciousness, verbal report on internal states, and for Metacognition. In summary, we argue that already simple networks allow for properties of consciousness if leaving the phenomenal

  19. Becoming conscious of the American middle class (un)consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kroos, Karmo

    2012-09-01

    It is argued in this article that social psychology would make the greatest contribution to research on class identity if it concentrated on the area closest to psychology-analysis of class consciousness. In order to show that the study of the psyche and mentality of the middle class is one of the least researched aspects of the American middle class, a brief overview of the different approaches to the study of the middle class in selected disciplines will be offered. It will be demonstrated that even if the identity of the U.S. middle class cannot be fully understood without its history and the social context in which it operates, it is the study of its (un)consciousness that social psychology should be focusing its research efforts on. The alternative would make social psychology indistinguishable from social history or sociology.

  20. Intrinsic Functional Connectivity Patterns Predict Consciousness Level and Recovery Outcome in Acquired Brain Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xuehai; Zou, Qihong; Hu, Jin; Tang, Weijun; Mao, Ying; Gao, Liang; Zhu, Jianhong; Jin, Yi; Wu, Xin; Lu, Lu; Zhang, Yaojun; Zhang, Yao; Dai, Zhengjia; Gao, Jia-Hong; Weng, Xuchu; Northoff, Georg; Giacino, Joseph T.; He, Yong

    2015-01-01

    For accurate diagnosis and prognostic prediction of acquired brain injury (ABI), it is crucial to understand the neurobiological mechanisms underlying loss of consciousness. However, there is no consensus on which regions and networks act as biomarkers for consciousness level and recovery outcome in ABI. Using resting-state fMRI, we assessed intrinsic functional connectivity strength (FCS) of whole-brain networks in a large sample of 99 ABI patients with varying degrees of consciousness loss (including fully preserved consciousness state, minimally conscious state, unresponsive wakefulness syndrome/vegetative state, and coma) and 34 healthy control subjects. Consciousness level was evaluated using the Glasgow Coma Scale and Coma Recovery Scale-Revised on the day of fMRI scanning; recovery outcome was assessed using the Glasgow Outcome Scale 3 months after the fMRI scanning. One-way ANOVA of FCS, Spearman correlation analyses between FCS and the consciousness level and recovery outcome, and FCS-based multivariate pattern analysis were performed. We found decreased FCS with loss of consciousness primarily distributed in the posterior cingulate cortex/precuneus (PCC/PCU), medial prefrontal cortex, and lateral parietal cortex. The FCS values of these regions were significantly correlated with consciousness level and recovery outcome. Multivariate support vector machine discrimination analysis revealed that the FCS patterns predicted whether patients with unresponsive wakefulness syndrome/vegetative state and coma would regain consciousness with an accuracy of 81.25%, and the most discriminative region was the PCC/PCU. These findings suggest that intrinsic functional connectivity patterns of the human posteromedial cortex could serve as a potential indicator for consciousness level and recovery outcome in individuals with ABI. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Varying degrees of consciousness loss and recovery are commonly observed in acquired brain injury patients, yet the

  1. Change of inhabitants consciousness on air pollution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Imai, N.; Abe, K.; Komuro, K.; Oda, M.

    1972-11-01

    The consciousness of inhabitants in Isogo Ward, Yokohama City about air pollution was surveyed in 1969 and 1973. A group of industrial factories was partly in operation in 1969 but was in full operation by 1973. Fortunately there was very slight difference in sex ratio, age, occupation, health condition, and smoking habits of the objects between 1969 and 1973. The survey was performed by questionnaires consisting of 43 items. The percentage of positive answers to human impairments in 1969 and 1973 were: 38.7 and 34.2 experience of health damage; 8.1 and 5.4 of eye-irritation; 16.1 and 14.5 of throat-irritation; 5.8 and 13.6 of sneeze; 4.2 and 2.3 of snivel; 9.2 and 10.2 of cough; 3.6 and 17.1 of dyspnea; 5.4 and 7.4 of asthma; and 22.2 and 5.7 of odor. Generally, the largest source of air pollution in this area was auto exhaust followed by factory-exhaust, and the change of inhabitants consciousness about air pollution pointed out the situation. Most inhabitants were pessimistic about the future status of air pollution in the surveys in 1969 and also in 1973.

  2. Consciousness, cognition and brain networks: New perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aldana, E M; Valverde, J L; Fábregas, N

    2016-10-01

    A detailed analysis of the literature on consciousness and cognition mechanisms based on the neural networks theory is presented. The immune and inflammatory response to the anesthetic-surgical procedure induces modulation of neuronal plasticity by influencing higher cognitive functions. Anesthetic drugs can cause unconsciousness, producing a functional disruption of cortical and thalamic cortical integration complex. The external and internal perceptions are processed through an intricate network of neural connections, involving the higher nervous activity centers, especially the cerebral cortex. This requires an integrated model, formed by neural networks and their interactions with highly specialized regions, through large-scale networks, which are distributed throughout the brain collecting information flow of these perceptions. Functional and effective connectivity between large-scale networks, are essential for consciousness, unconsciousness and cognition. It is what is called the "human connectome" or map neural networks. Copyright © 2014 Sociedad Española de Anestesiología, Reanimación y Terapéutica del Dolor. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  3. Conscious perception of emotional stimuli: brain mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Derek G V; Greening, Steven G

    2012-08-01

    Emotional stimuli are thought to gain rapid and privileged access to processing resources in the brain. The structures involved in this enhanced access are thought to support subconscious, reflexive processes. Whether these pathways contribute to the phenomenological experience of emotional visual awareness (i.e., conscious perception) is unclear. In this review, it is argued that subcortical networks associated with the rapid detection of emotionally salient stimuli also play a key role in shaping awareness. This proposal is based on the idea that awareness of visual stimuli should be considered along a continuum, having intermediate levels, rather than as an all-or-none construct. It is also argued that awareness of emotional stimuli requires less input from frontoparietal structures that are often considered crucial for visual awareness. Evidence is also presented that implicates a region of the medial prefrontal cortex, involved in emotion regulation, in modulating amygdala output to determine awareness of emotional visual stimuli; when emotional stimuli are present, the conscious perception of alternative stimuli requires greater regulatory influences from cortical structures. Thus, emotional stimuli are privileged not only for neuronal representation and impact on subconscious processes, but also for awareness, allowing humans to deal flexibly rather than merely reflexively to biologically significant stimuli.

  4. Measuring consciousness in severely damaged brains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gosseries, Olivia; Di, Haibo; Laureys, Steven; Boly, Mélanie

    2014-01-01

    Significant advances have been made in the behavioral assessment and clinical management of disorders of consciousness (DOC). In addition, functional neuroimaging paradigms are now available to help assess consciousness levels in this challenging patient population. The success of these neuroimaging approaches as diagnostic markers is, however, intrinsically linked to understanding the relationships between consciousness and the brain. In this context, a combined theoretical approach to neuroimaging studies is needed. The promise of such theoretically based markers is illustrated by recent findings that used a perturbational approach to assess the levels of consciousness. Further research on the contents of consciousness in DOC is also needed.

  5. An information integration theory of consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tononi Giulio

    2004-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Consciousness poses two main problems. The first is understanding the conditions that determine to what extent a system has conscious experience. For instance, why is our consciousness generated by certain parts of our brain, such as the thalamocortical system, and not by other parts, such as the cerebellum? And why are we conscious during wakefulness and much less so during dreamless sleep? The second problem is understanding the conditions that determine what kind of consciousness a system has. For example, why do specific parts of the brain contribute specific qualities to our conscious experience, such as vision and audition? Presentation of the hypothesis This paper presents a theory about what consciousness is and how it can be measured. According to the theory, consciousness corresponds to the capacity of a system to integrate information. This claim is motivated by two key phenomenological properties of consciousness: differentiation – the availability of a very large number of conscious experiences; and integration – the unity of each such experience. The theory states that the quantity of consciousness available to a system can be measured as the Φ value of a complex of elements. Φ is the amount of causally effective information that can be integrated across the informational weakest link of a subset of elements. A complex is a subset of elements with Φ>0 that is not part of a subset of higher Φ. The theory also claims that the quality of consciousness is determined by the informational relationships among the elements of a complex, which are specified by the values of effective information among them. Finally, each particular conscious experience is specified by the value, at any given time, of the variables mediating informational interactions among the elements of a complex. Testing the hypothesis The information integration theory accounts, in a principled manner, for several neurobiological observations

  6. The Moral Insignificance of Self-consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shepherd, Joshua

    2017-06-01

    In this paper, I examine the claim that self-consciousness is highly morally significant, such that the fact that an entity is self-conscious generates strong moral reasons against harming or killing that entity. This claim is apparently very intuitive, but I argue it is false. I consider two ways to defend this claim: one indirect, the other direct. The best-known arguments relevant to self-consciousness's significance take the indirect route. I examine them and argue that (a) in various ways they depend on unwarranted assumptions about self-consciousness's functional significance, and (b) once these assumptions are undermined, motivation for these arguments dissipates. I then consider the direct route to self-consciousness's significance, which depends on claims that self-consciousness has intrinsic value or final value. I argue what intrinsic or final value self-consciousness possesses is not enough to generate strong moral reasons against harming or killing.

  7. Robust inducible Cre recombinase activity in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum enables efficient gene deletion within a single asexual erythrocytic growth cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Christine R; Das, Sujaan; Wong, Eleanor H; Andenmatten, Nicole; Stallmach, Robert; Hackett, Fiona; Herman, Jean-Paul; Müller, Sylke; Meissner, Markus; Blackman, Michael J

    2013-05-01

    Asexual blood stages of the malaria parasite, which cause all the pathology associated with malaria, can readily be genetically modified by homologous recombination, enabling the functional study of parasite genes that are not essential in this part of the life cycle. However, no widely applicable method for conditional mutagenesis of essential asexual blood-stage malarial genes is available, hindering their functional analysis. We report the application of the DiCre conditional recombinase system to Plasmodium falciparum, the causative agent of the most dangerous form of malaria. We show that DiCre can be used to obtain rapid, highly regulated site-specific recombination in P. falciparum, capable of excising loxP-flanked sequences from a genomic locus with close to 100% efficiency within the time-span of a single erythrocytic growth cycle. DiCre-mediated deletion of the SERA5 3' UTR failed to reduce expression of the gene due to the existence of alternative cryptic polyadenylation sites within the modified locus. However, we successfully used the system to recycle the most widely used drug resistance marker for P. falciparum, human dihydrofolate reductase, in the process producing constitutively DiCre-expressing P. falciparum clones that have broad utility for the functional analysis of essential asexual blood-stage parasite genes.

  8. Integrated approach to cost consciousness

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morgan, R.E.

    1988-01-01

    Cost consciousness was given a very necessary boost by the collapse of oil prices in 1986 and downward movements in prices have served to re-inforce the need for vigilance: oil companies were becoming complacent. The climate necessary for cost consciousness to flourish as part of the oil company culture is established by higher management attitude and can be reinforced by organizational structure. British Petroleum's current production/exploration organisational structure is reported on in the first section of this paper and this is followed by a discussion of pertinent cost-oriented observations to emerge from this grouping related both to the component phases of the exploitation of a field, and to the cost of engineering/managing same.

  9. Evidence for a communal consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bobrow, Robert S

    2011-01-01

    Recently described social network phenomena show that emotionally connected people come to share certain traits, including obesity, happiness, and loneliness. These do not appear to be mediated by face-to-face contact. Other examples of groups with a common connection that act in unison are mass hysteria, menstrual synchrony, and the ability of a group to guess the number of jelly beans in a jar. The animal kingdom abounds with examples of groups functioning as a single whole: fish school, birds flock, hoofed animals herd, ant and bee colonies work as a single organism. Try as they might, neuroscientists have been unable to find an anatomical seat of consciousness within the brain. C.G. Jung's realization of a collective unconscious began with an observation of a patient whose thoughts matched previous writings that the patient had never seen. The "emotional telepathy" of social network phenomena suggests a collective/communal consciousness as well.

  10. Classical Coherence, Life and Consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghose, Partha

    2014-07-01

    There have been many claims that quantum mechanics plays a key role in the origin and/or operation of biological organisms, beyond merely providing the basis for the shapes and sizes of biological molecules and their chemical affinities. These range from Schrödinger's suggestion that quantum fluctuations produce mutations, to Hameroff and Penrose's conjecture that quantum coherence in microtubules is linked to consciousness. I review some of these claims in this paper, and discuss the serious problem of decoherence.

  11. Conscious sedation: A dying practice?

    OpenAIRE

    Manickam, Palaniappan; Kanaan, Ziad; Zakaria, Khalid

    2013-01-01

    Sedation practices vary according to countries with different health system regulations, the procedures done, and local circumstances. Interestingly, differences in the setting in which the practice of gastroenterology and endoscopy takes place (university-based vs academic practice) as well as other systematic practice differences influence the attitude of endoscopists concerning sedation practices. Conscious sedation using midazolam and opioids is the current standard method of sedation in ...

  12. Ego consciousness in the Japanese psyche: culture, myth and disaster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yama, Megumi

    2013-02-01

    With globalization, modern Western consciousness has spread across the world. This influx has affected the Japanese culture but ego consciousness has emerged through a long history and different course from that of the West. At a personal level, I have been interested in the establishment of a subject in a culture that values homogeneity and to understand this, I reflect on my own history of living in both the East and the West and on my experience practising psychotherapy. To show Japanese collective functioning at its best, I describe the human inter-connectedness and collaboration during the 2011 disaster. I explore the 'Nothing' at the centre of the Japanese psyche, through a reading of Japanese myth, especially the most originary and almost pre-human stories that come before the anthropomorphized 'First Parents'. A retelling of this founding story, reveals the multiple iterations over time that manifest in embodied being; this gradual emergence of consciousness is contrasted with Western myths of origin that are more clear and specific. This study attempts to bring awareness of the value and meaning of Eastern consciousness and its centre in the 'Nothing'.

  13. Dynamic functional connectivity and brain metastability during altered states of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavanna, Federico; Vilas, Martina G; Palmucci, Matías; Tagliazucchi, Enzo

    2017-10-03

    The scientific study of human consciousness has greatly benefited from the development of non-invasive brain imaging methods. The quest to identify the neural correlates of consciousness combined psychophysical experimentation with neuroimaging tools such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to map the changes in neural activity associated with conscious vs. unconscious percepts. Different neuroimaging methods have also been applied to characterize spontaneous brain activity fluctuations during altered states of consciousness, and to develop quantitative metrics for the level of consciousness. Most of these studies, however, have not explored the dynamic nature of the whole-brain imaging data provided by fMRI. A series of empirical and computational studies strongly suggests that the temporal fluctuations observed in this data present a non-trivial structure, and that this structure is compatible with the exploration of a discrete repertoire of states. In this review we focus on how dynamic neuroimaging can be used to address theoretical accounts of consciousness based on the hypothesis of a dynamic core, i.e. a constantly evolving and transiently stable set of coordinated neurons that constitute an integrated and differentiated physical substrate for each conscious experience. We review work exploring the possibility that metastability in brain dynamics leads to a repertoire of dynamic core states, and discuss how it might be modified during altered states of consciousness. This discussion prompts us to review neuroimaging studies aimed to map the dynamic exploration of the repertoire of states as a function of consciousness. Complementary studies of the dynamic core hypothesis using perturbative methods are also discussed. Finally, we propose that a link between metastability in brain dynamics and the level of consciousness could pave the way towards a mechanistic understanding of altered states of consciousness using tools from dynamical systems

  14. The claustrum’s proposed role in consciousness is supported by the effect and target localization of Salvia divinorum

    OpenAIRE

    Stiefel, Klaus M.; Alistair eMerrifield; Holcombe, Alex O.

    2014-01-01

    This article brings together three findings and ideas relevant for the understanding of human consciousness: (I) Crick’s and Koch’s theory that the claustrum is a “conductor of consciousness” crucial for subjective conscious experience. (II) Subjective reports of the consciousness-altering effects the plant Salvia divinorum, whose primary active ingredient is salvinorin A, a κ-opioid receptor agonist. (III) The high density of κ-opioid receptors in the claustrum. Fact III suggests that the co...

  15. Timing and Awareness of Movement Decisions: Does Consciousness Really Come Too Late?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrian G Guggisberg

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Since Libet’s seminal observation that a brain potential related to movement preparation occurs before participants report to be aware of their movement intention, it has been debated whether consciousness has causal influence on movement decisions. Here we review recent advances that provide new insights into the dynamics of human decision-making and question the validity of different markers used for determining the onset of neural and conscious events. Motor decisions involve multiple stages of goal evaluation, intention formation, and action execution. While the validity of the Bereitschaftspotential as index of neural movement preparation is controversial, improved neural markers are able to predict decision outcome even at early stages. Participants report being conscious of their decisions only at the time of final intention formation, just before the primary motor cortex starts executing the chosen action. However, accumulating evidence suggests that this is an artifact of Libet’s clock method used for assessing consciousness. More refined methods suggest that intention consciousness does not appear instantaneously but builds up progressively. In this view, early neural markers of decision outcome are not unconscious but simply reflect conscious goal evaluation stages which are not final yet and therefore not reported with the clock method. Alternatives to the Libet clock are discussed that might allow for assessment of consciousness during decision making with improved sensitivity to early decision stages and with less influence from meta-conscious and perceptual inferences.

  16. More Than Meets the Eye: Toward a Post-Materialist Model of Consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brabant, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    Commonly accepted models of human consciousness have substantial shortcomings, in the sense that they cannot account for the entire scope of human experiences. The goal of this article is to describe a model with higher explanatory power, by integrating ideas from psychology and quantum mechanics. In the first part, the need for a paradigm change will be justified by presenting three types of phenomena that challenge the materialistic view of consciousness. The second part is about proposing an alternative view of reality and mind-matter manifestation that is able to accommodate these phenomena. Finally, the ideas from the previous parts will be combined with the psychological concepts developed by Frederic W. H. Myers. The result is a more comprehensive model of human consciousness that offers a novel perspective on altered states of consciousness, genius, and mental health.

  17. Consciousness and the brain deciphering how the brain codes our thoughts

    CERN Document Server

    Dehaene, Stanislas

    2014-01-01

    How does our brain generate a conscious thought? And why does so much of our knowledge remain unconscious? Thanks to clever psychological and brain-imaging experiments, scientists are closer to cracking this mystery than ever before. In this lively book, Stanislas Dehaene describes the pioneering work his lab and the labs of other cognitive neuroscientists worldwide have accomplished in defining, testing, and explaining the brain events behind a conscious state. We can now pin down the neurons that fire when a person reports becoming aware of a piece of information and understand the crucial role unconscious computations play in how we make decisions. The emerging theory enables a test of consciousness in animals, babies, and those with severe brain injuries. A joyous exploration of the mind and its thrilling complexities, Consciousness and the Brain will excite anyone interested in cutting-edge science and technology and the vast philosophical, personal, and ethical implications of finally quantifying cons...

  18. Effects of hippocampal low-frequency stimulation in idiopathic non-human primate epilepsy assessed via a remote-sensing-enabled neurostimulator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wozny, Thomas A; Lipski, Witold J; Alhourani, Ahmad; Kondylis, Efstathios D; Antony, Arun; Richardson, R Mark

    2017-08-01

    Individuals with pharmacoresistant epilepsy remain a large and under-treated patient population. Continued technologic advancements in implantable neurostimulators have spurred considerable research efforts directed towards the development of novel antiepileptic stimulation therapies. However, the lack of adequate preclinical experimental platforms has precluded a detailed understanding of the differential effects of stimulation parameters on neuronal activity within seizure networks. In order to chronically monitor seizures and the effects of stimulation in a freely-behaving non-human primate with idiopathic epilepsy, we employed a novel simultaneous video-intracranial EEG recording platform using a state-of-the-art sensing-enabled, rechargeable clinical neurostimulator with real-time seizure detection and wireless data streaming capabilities. Using this platform, we were able to characterize the electrographic and semiologic features of the focal-onset, secondarily generalizing tonic-clonic seizures stably expressed in this animal. A series of acute experiments exploring low-frequency (2Hz) hippocampal stimulation identified a pulse width (150μs) and current amplitude (4mA) combination which maximally suppressed local hippocampal activity. These optimized stimulation parameters were then delivered to the seizure onset-side hippocampus in a series of chronic experiments. This long-term testing revealed that the suppressive effects of low-frequency hippocampal stimulation 1) diminish when delivered continuously but are maintained when stimulation is cycled on and off, 2) are dependent on circadian rhythms, and 3) do not necessarily confer seizure protective effects. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Consciousness and the Invention of Morel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perogamvros, Lampros

    2013-01-01

    A scientific study of consciousness should take into consideration both objective and subjective measures of conscious experiences. To this date, very few studies have tried to integrate third-person data, or data about the neurophysiological correlates of conscious states, with first-person data, or data about subjective experience. Inspired by Morel's invention (Casares, 1940), a literary machine capable of reproducing sensory-dependent external reality, this article suggests that combination of virtual reality techniques and brain reading technologies, that is, decoding of conscious states by brain activity alone, can offer this integration. It is also proposed that the multimodal, simulating, and integrative capacities of the dreaming brain render it an “endogenous” Morel's machine, which can potentially be used in studying consciousness, but not always in a reliable way. Both the literary machine and dreaming could contribute to a better understanding of conscious states. PMID:23467765

  20. Freudian theory and consciousness: A conceptual analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    De Sousa Avinash

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper aims at taking a fresh look at Freudian psychoanalytical theory from a modern perspective. Freudian psychology is a science based on the unconscious (id and the conscious (ego. Various aspects of Freudian thinking are examined from a modern perspective and the relevance of the psychoanalytical theory of consciousness is projected. Do psychoanalysis and the unconsciousness have something to teach us about consciousness? Approaching Freud from a historical, psychoanalytical, anthropological and sociological perspective, we need to look at how Freudian theory may contribute to a better understanding of consciousness. We also need to look at psychoanalytical psychotherapy and its contribution to a better understanding of body-mind dualism and consciousness as a whole. Ego psychology is considered in the present day context and it is synthesized with various psychological studies to give us a better understanding of consciousness.

  1. Freudian theory and consciousness: A conceptual analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Avinash De Sousa

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper aims at taking a fresh look at Freudian psychoanalytical theory from a modern perspective. Freudian psychology is a science based on the unconscious (id and the conscious (ego. Various aspects of Freudian thinking are examined from a modern perspective and the relevance of the psychoanalytical theory of consciousness is projected. Do psychoanalysis and the unconsciousness have something to teach us about consciousness? Approaching Freud from a historical, psychoanalytical, anthropological and sociological perspective, we need to look at how Freudian theory may contribute to a better understanding of consciousness. We also need to look at psychoanalytical psychotherapy and its contribution to a better understanding of body-mind dualism and consciousness as a whole. Ego psychology is considered in the present day context and it is synthesized with various psychological studies to give us a better understanding of consciousness.

  2. Freudian theory and consciousness: a conceptual analysis**.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Sousa, Avinash

    2011-01-01

    This paper aims at taking a fresh look at Freudian psychoanalytical theory from a modern perspective. Freudian psychology is a science based on the unconscious (id) and the conscious (ego). Various aspects of Freudian thinking are examined from a modern perspective and the relevance of the psychoanalytical theory of consciousness is projected. Do psychoanalysis and the unconsciousness have something to teach us about consciousness? Approaching Freud from a historical, psychoanalytical, anthropological and sociological perspective, we need to look at how Freudian theory may contribute to a better understanding of consciousness. We also need to look at psychoanalytical psychotherapy and its contribution to a better understanding of body-mind dualism and consciousness as a whole. Ego psychology is considered in the present day context and it is synthesized with various psychological studies to give us a better understanding of consciousness.

  3. Conscious Pulse II The rules of engagement

    CERN Document Server

    Mould, R A

    2002-01-01

    This is the final paper in a series that considers the rules of engagement between conscious states and physiological states. In this paper, we imagine that an endogenous quantum mechanical superposition is created by a classical stimulus, and that this leads to a `physiological pulse' of states that are in superposition with one another. This pulse is correlated with a `conscious pulse' of the kind discussed in a previous paper (Conscious Pulse I). We then add a rule (5) to the four rules previously given. This rule addresses the effect of `pain' consciousness on both of these pulses, and in doing so, it validates the "Parallel Principle" applied to pain. Key words: Brain states, cat paradox, consciousness, conscious observer, macroscopic superposition, measurement, state reduction, state collapse, von Neumann.

  4. Consciousness and the Invention of Morel

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lampros ePerogamvros

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available A scientific study of consciousness should take into consideration both objective and subjective measures of conscious experiences. To this date, very few studies have tried to integrate third-person data, or data about the neurophysiological correlates of conscious states, with first-person data, or data about subjective experience. Inspired by Morel’s invention (Casares, 1940, a literary machine capable of reproducing sensory-dependent external reality, this article suggests that combination of virtual reality techniques and brain reading technologies, that is, decoding of conscious states by brain activity alone, can offer this integration. It is also proposed that the multimodal, simulating and integrative capacities of the dreaming brain render it an 'endogenous' Morel's machine, which can potentially be used in studying consciousness, but not always in a reliable way. Both the literary machine and dreaming could contribute to a better understanding of conscious states.

  5. Beyond cultural competence: critical consciousness, social justice, and multicultural education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumagai, Arno K; Lypson, Monica L

    2009-06-01

    In response to the Liaison Committee on Medical Education mandate that medical education must address both the needs of an increasingly diverse society and disparities in health care, medical schools have implemented a wide variety of programs in cultural competency. The authors critically analyze the concept of cultural competency and propose that multicultural education must go beyond the traditional notions of "competency" (i.e., knowledge, skills, and attitudes). It must involve the fostering of a critical awareness--a critical consciousness--of the self, others, and the world and a commitment to addressing issues of societal relevance in health care. They describe critical consciousness and posit that it is different from, albeit complementary to, critical thinking, and suggest that both are essential in the training of physicians. The authors also propose that the object of knowledge involved in critical consciousness and in learning about areas of medicine with social relevance--multicultural education, professionalism, medical ethics, etc.--is fundamentally different from that acquired in the biomedical sciences. They discuss how aspects of multicultural education are addressed at the University of Michigan Medical School. Central to the fostering of critical consciousness are engaging dialogue in a safe environment, a change in the traditional relationship between teachers and students, faculty development, and critical assessment of individual development and programmatic goals. Such an orientation will lead to the training of physicians equally skilled in the biomedical aspects of medicine and in the role medicine plays in ensuring social justice and meeting human needs.

  6. Energy and environmental consciousness. Differences between advanced and developing countries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Takeshita, Takashi [Institute of Nuclear Safety System Inc., Seika, Kyoto (Japan)

    1999-09-01

    The purpose of the present study is to understand how much differences there are between advanced countries and developing countries in terms of environmental and energy consciousness. We are experiencing now a big dilemma of the human desire to continue to exist and, at the same time, to develop the economy against the worsening of the Earth's environmental conditions. Understanding international differences of environmental and energy consciousness is a short way to solve this dilemma. The results of the present study were that peoples from advanced countries feel that science and technology are sometimes unreliable, while those from developing countries, are willing to rely upon them. However regardless of the country, people share the same consciousness about Earth's environment. In both, advanced and developing countries, people are reluctant to give up living comforts, unless this leads to a higher standard of living. Based on this result, the author would like to conduct another survey concerning the consciousness of future lifestyle. (author)

  7. Concept of consciousness in the context of quantum mechanics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Menskii, Mikhail B [P.N. Lebedev Physics Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow (Russian Federation)

    2005-04-30

    Conceptual problems of the quantum theory of measurement are considered, which are embodied in well-known paradoxes and in Bell's inequalities. Arguments are advanced in favor of the viewpoint that these problems may hardly be solved without direct inclusion of the observer's consciousness in the theoretical description of a quantum measurement. Discussed in this connection is the so-called many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics proposed by Everett, as is the extension of Everett's concept, which consists in the assumption that separating the quantum state components corresponding to alternative measurements is not only associated with the observer's consciousness but is completely identified with it. This approach is shown to open up qualitatively new avenues for the unification of physics and psychology and, more broadly, of the sciences and the humanities. This may lead to an extension of the theory of consciousness and shed light on significant and previously misunderstood phenomena in the sphere of consciousness. (reviews of topical problems)

  8. Freudian theory and consciousness: A conceptual analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Avinash De Sousa

    2011-01-01

    This paper aims at taking a fresh look at Freudian psychoanalytical theory from a modern perspective. Freudian psychology is a science based on the unconscious (id) and the conscious (ego). Various aspects of Freudian thinking are examined from a modern perspective and the relevance of the psychoanalytical theory of consciousness is projected. Do psychoanalysis and the unconsciousness have something to teach us about consciousness? Approaching Freud from a historical, psychoanalytical, anthro...

  9. Vladimir Nabokov’ s Political Consciousness

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    马红旗

    2006-01-01

    This study consists of three parts. PartⅠ, entitled " Nabokov’ s Women," concentrates on the analysis of Nabokov’ s major women identities of different types. My purpose is to demonstrate that in his creation of the women characters, Nabokov’ s political consciousness—mainly his vindication of individual freedom—is unmistakably, although indirectly, exemplified. Due to the different types of women discussed in this study, and also due to the different aspect of his political consciousness that is emphasized in different women identities, this part is subdivided into three chapters. Chapter One, entitled "Women in the Triangle: Martha and Margot," focuses on the two women characters in Nabokov’ s early novels. King, Queen, Knave and Laughter in the Dark, aiming to provide an in-depth analysis of the two, and to show that Nabokov has be stowed his special purpose on the creation of Martha and Margot, that is, his condemnation on those who reduce the free and active individual into objects, and such condemnation echoing with Nabokov’ s later direct vindication of individual freedom. Chapter Two, entitled "The Eternal Feminine:Lolita and Ada," analyzes the two title characters in Lolita and Ada, or Ardor:A Family Chronicle, illustrating that Lolita is the victim in that her free consciousness is purposefully neglected by the other, man in that case;while Ada enjoys her life totally because she can conduct her free consciousness in her own life. Chapter Three, entitled " Other Types and Women in His Mind’ s Eye," deals with Elisabeth, another woman character in Laughter in the Dark, who is a good traditional wife, and Liza, ex-wife of Pnin in Pnin, who is what Nabokov terms as poshlost. In addition, this chapter also provides an examination of Nabokov’ s attitude toward women. Through this analysis, Nabokov’ s Russian Complex is to a degree illustrated.

  10. Enabling immersive simulation.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McCoy, Josh (University of California Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA); Mateas, Michael (University of California Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA); Hart, Derek H.; Whetzel, Jonathan; Basilico, Justin Derrick; Glickman, Matthew R.; Abbott, Robert G.

    2009-02-01

    The object of the 'Enabling Immersive Simulation for Complex Systems Analysis and Training' LDRD has been to research, design, and engineer a capability to develop simulations which (1) provide a rich, immersive interface for participation by real humans (exploiting existing high-performance game-engine technology wherever possible), and (2) can leverage Sandia's substantial investment in high-fidelity physical and cognitive models implemented in the Umbra simulation framework. We report here on these efforts. First, we describe the integration of Sandia's Umbra modular simulation framework with the open-source Delta3D game engine. Next, we report on Umbra's integration with Sandia's Cognitive Foundry, specifically to provide for learning behaviors for 'virtual teammates' directly from observed human behavior. Finally, we describe the integration of Delta3D with the ABL behavior engine, and report on research into establishing the theoretical framework that will be required to make use of tools like ABL to scale up to increasingly rich and realistic virtual characters.

  11. Representing Chronic Disorders of Consciousness:

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Alice

    2014-01-01

    This article explores problems of voicelessness in Isabel Allende’s Paula (1995) through a focus on the story of Paula’s illness and subsequent death from porphyria in 1992. I argue that the language, categories and stories through which disorders of consciousness are constructed are central to ethical decision-making and shifting cultural understandings of these conditions. In Paula, Allende uses an experimental, hybrid narrative form that draws on illness narrative, magical realist novel, national history, letters, and memoir to challenge traditional depictions of “coma” and to create a new public space through which these issues of voicelessness can be addressed. PMID:25055709

  12. Intrinsic Awareness, the Fundamental State of Consciousness

    CERN Document Server

    Luo, Weili

    2011-01-01

    In an effort to simplify the complexity in the studies of consciousness, the author suggests to divide the conscious experiences into a fundamental state, the intrinsic awareness (IA), and functions of this fundamental state. IA does not depend on external environment, our sense organs, and our cognitions. This ground state of consciousness is timeless and irreducible to sub-constituents; therefore reductionism can apply neither to the analysis nor to the new theory of IA. The methodology for investigating IA is proposed and the relation between IA and the hard problem in consciousness proposed by Chalmers is discussed.

  13. Consciousness as a state of matter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tegmark, Max

    2015-07-01

    I examine the hypothesis that consciousness can be understood as a state of matter, "perceptronium", with distinctive information processing abilities. I explore five basic principles that may distinguish conscious matter from other physical systems such as solids, liquids and gases: the information, integration, independence, dynamics and utility principles. This approach generalizes Giulio Tononi's integrated information framework for neural-network-based consciousness to arbitrary quantum systems, and provides interesting links to error-correcting codes and condensed matter criticality, as well as an interesting connections between the emergence of consciousness and the emergence of time. (For more technical details, see arXiv:1401.1219).

  14. Consciousness as a State of Matter

    CERN Document Server

    Tegmark, Max

    2014-01-01

    I examine the hypothesis that consciousness can be understood as a state of matter, "perceptronium", with distinctive information processing abilities. I explore five basic principles that may distinguish conscious matter from other physical systems such as solids, liquids and gases: the information, integration, independence, dynamics and utility principles. This approach generalizes Giulio Tononi's integrated information framework for neural-network-based consciousness to arbitrary quantum systems, and provides interesting links to error-correcting codes and condensed matter criticality, as well as an interesting connections between the emergence of consciousness and the emergence of time. (For more technical details, see arXiv:1401.1219).

  15. Consciousness and Attention: On sufficiency and necessity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeroen J A Van Boxtel

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Recent research has slowly corroded a belief that selective attention and consciousness are so tightly entangled that they cannot be individually examined. In this review, we summarize psychophysical and neurophysiological evidence for a dissociation between top-down attention and consciousness. The evidence includes recent findings that show subjects can attend to perceptually invisible objects. More contentious is the finding that subjects can become conscious of an isolated object, or the gist of the scene in the near absence of top-down attention; we critically re-examine the possibility of ‘complete’ absence of top-down attention. We also cover the recent flurry of studies that utilized independent manipulation of attention and consciousness. These studies have shown paradoxical effects of attention, including examples where top-down attention and consciousness have opposing effects, leading us to strengthen and revise our previous views. Neuroimaging studies with EEG, MEG and fMRI are uncovering the distinct neuronal correlates of selective attention and consciousness in dissociative paradigms. These findings point to a functional dissociation: attention as analyzer and consciousness as synthesizer. Separating the effects of selective visual attention from those of visual consciousness is of paramount importance to untangle the neural substrates of consciousness from those for attention.

  16. Closing in on the constitution of consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven M. Miller

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The science of consciousness is a nascent and thriving field of research that is founded on identifying the minimally sufficient neural correlates of consciousness. However, I have argued that it is the neural constitution of consciousness that science seeks to understand and that there are no evident strategies for distinguishing the correlates and constitution of (phenomenal consciousness. Here I review this correlation/constitution distinction problem and challenge the existing foundations of consciousness science. I present the main analyses from a longer paper in press on this issue, focusing on recording, inhibition, stimulation and combined inhibition/stimulation strategies, including proposal of the Jenga analogy to illustrate why identifying the minimally sufficient neural correlates of consciousness should not be considered the ultimate target of consciousness science. Thereafter I suggest that while combined inhibition and stimulation strategies might identify some constitutive neural activities — indeed minimally sufficient constitutive neural activities — such strategies fail to identify the whole neural constitution of consciousness and thus the correlation/constitution distinction problem is not fully solved. Various clarifications, potential objections and related scientific and philosophical issues are also discussed and I conclude by proposing new foundational claims for consciousness science.

  17. The Double-Consciousness of Du Bois & the "Mestiza Consciousness" of Anzaldua.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez, Theresa A.

    2002-01-01

    Suggests that W.E.B. Du Bois' concept of the "double-consciousness" and Gloria Anzaldua's concept of the "mestiza consciousness" are significant forms of oppositional culture and consciousness. Asserts that their two concepts are linked and nuanced ideas that describe interlocking systems of oppression spanning two centuries and arguably binding…

  18. The Double-Consciousness of Du Bois & the "Mestiza Consciousness" of Anzaldua.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez, Theresa A.

    2002-01-01

    Suggests that W.E.B. Du Bois' concept of the "double-consciousness" and Gloria Anzaldua's concept of the "mestiza consciousness" are significant forms of oppositional culture and consciousness. Asserts that their two concepts are linked and nuanced ideas that describe interlocking systems of oppression spanning two centuries…

  19. Pupillary responses reveal infants' discrimination of facial emotions independent of conscious perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jessen, Sarah; Altvater-Mackensen, Nicole; Grossmann, Tobias

    2016-05-01

    Sensitive responding to others' emotions is essential during social interactions among humans. There is evidence for the existence of subcortically mediated emotion discrimination processes that occur independent of conscious perception in adults. However, only recently work has begun to examine the development of automatic emotion processing systems during infancy. In particular, it is unclear whether emotional expressions impact infants' autonomic nervous system regardless of conscious perception. We examined this question by measuring pupillary responses while subliminally and supraliminally presenting 7-month-old infants with happy and fearful faces. Our results show greater pupil dilation, indexing enhanced autonomic arousal, in response to happy compared to fearful faces regardless of conscious perception. Our findings suggest that, early in ontogeny, emotion discrimination occurs independent of conscious perception and is associated with differential autonomic responses. This provides evidence for the view that automatic emotion processing systems are an early-developing building block of human social functioning.

  20. Music in disorders of consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jens Dieter Rollnik

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available This review presents an overview of the use of music therapy in neurological early rehabilitation of patients with coma and other disorders of consciousness (DOC such as unresponsive wakefulness syndrome (UWS or minimally conscious state (MCS. There is evidence that patients suffering from UWS show emotional processing of auditory information, such as listening to speech. Thus, it seems reasonable to believe that music listening – as part of an enriched environment setting – may be of therapeutic value in these patients. There is, however, a considerable lack of evidence. The authors strongly encourage further studies to evaluate the efficacy of music listening in patients with DOC in neurological early rehabilitation. These studies should consider a precise clinical definition and homogeneity of the patient cohort with respect to the quality (coma vs. UWS vs. MCS, duration (rather weeks to months than days and cause (traumatic vs. non-traumatic of DOC, a standardised intervention protocol, valid clinical outcome parameters over a longer observation period (weeks to months, monitoring of neurophysiological and vegetative parameters and, if available, neuroimaging to confirm diagnosis and to demonstrate responses and functional changes in the patients` brains.

  1. Defining and measuring environmental consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiménez Sánchez, Manuel

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Based on a review of the main analytical approaches found in the literature, in this paper we establish a multidimensional and behaviour-oriented definition of environmental consciousness. We propose a method to operationalize this definition with the final aim of obtaining summary measures (or indexes of this phenomenon which can be applied to different social contexts and time periods. The data obtained from a survey on environmental attitudes and behaviour conducted in 2004 among Andalusians (Ecobarómetro de Andalucía 2004 is used as an empirical basis for the proposed operationalization. The resulting measures are then employed to identify social groups according to the diverse forms of their environmental consciousness and to explore their basic socio-demographic profiles

    A partir de las principales aproximaciones analíticas presentes en la literatura, en este trabajo establecemos una definición de conciencia ambiental multidimensional y orientada a la conducta; proponemos un método para su operacionalización con el objetivo de elaborar medidas sintéticas de este fenómeno en distintos contextos sociales. La operacionalización propuesta utiliza como base empírica los resultados del Ecobarómetro de Andalucía (EBA 2004. Los indicadores resultantes son utilizados seguidamente para identificar distintos grupos sociales según la naturaleza de su conciencia ambiental.

  2. Embodied mind and phenomenal consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria VENIERI

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, a central debate in the philosophy of mind and cognitive science concerns the role of the body in perception and cognition. For many contemporary philosophers, not only cognition but also perception is connected mainly with the brain, where the processing of input from the senses takes place; whereas for the proponents of ‘embodied cognition’ other aspects of the body beyond the brain, including the environment, play a constitutive role in cognitive processes. In terms of perception, a new theory has emerged which stresses percep‑ tion’s active character and claims that the embodied subject and the environment, with which it interacts, form a dynamic system. Supporters of ‘enactive perception’ such as Susan Hurley and Alva Noë maintain that the physical substrate or the supervenience basis of perceptual experience and phenomenal consciousness may include besides the brain and the nervous system other bodily and environmental features. Yet, it will be argued in this paper that the interaction between the subject and the environment forms a system of causal relations, so we can theoretically interfere in the causal chains and create hallucinations, which cannot be distinguished from veridical perception, or a virtual reality as in the film Matrix (1999. This kind of argument and its related thought experiments aim to stress the primacy of the brain in determining phenomenal states, and show that the body and certain interactions with the environment have a causal, but not a constitutive or essential role, in forming phenomenal consciousness.

  3. Ictal alterations of consciousness during ecstatic seizures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Picard, Fabienne; Kurth, Florian

    2014-01-01

    Patients with ecstatic epileptic seizures report an altered consciousness, which they describe as a sense of heightened perception of themselves – they “feel very present” – and an increased vividness of sensory perceptions. Recently, the anterior insula has been proposed as the region where these seizures originate, based on the results of ictal nuclear imaging in three patients, the first induction of ecstatic auras by electrical stimulation, and the functional characteristics of the anterior insula in neuroimaging literature. Specifically, the anterior insula is thought to play a key role in integrating information from within the body, the external world, as well as the emotional states. In addition, the anterior insula is thought to convert this integrated information into successive global emotional moments, thus enabling both the construct of a sentient self as well as a mechanism for predictive coding. As part of the salience network, this region is also involved in switching from mind wandering toward attentional and executive processing. In this review, we will summarize previous patient reports and recap how insular functioning may be involved in the phenomenon of ecstatic seizures. Furthermore, we will relate these hypotheses to the results from research on meditation and effects of drug abuse.

  4. Problem of consciousness in learning systems and environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. F. Sergeev

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The article deals with the problems that arise when a human is involved into a complexly training systems and the environment. A theoretical analysis of the infl uence of consciousness on the training mechanisms within the framework of post non-classical conceptions of human psyche functioning was conceived. We argue that consciousness is not intended to refl ect the objective reality and acquire knowledge, and solves the problem of the construction of the subjective world, which is the sum of compromises between the subject and the dynamic environments of his experience. In contrast, consciousness selects and harmonizes the information useful for human life.The role of consciousness in training is largely contradictory and confusing. It is also the source of the new information. The information is distorted in order to create a world view, which tends to objectively contradictive to the outside observer and consistent for refl ective being. We stressed the important role of human’s multimodal sensory experience in the process of interaction between conscious and unconscious forms of knowledge creation and processing. We consider the qualitative difference between physical reality and the model presented in the subjective world. We postulated the existence in the mind of a human dynamic virtual model. According to this model, the natural world is delimited by person and opposed to it being a source of events that make up the content of his life. The border which was built in the consciousness divides constructed reality into the inner and outer worlds. These worlds have different significance for the subject, defining the nature of its activities.We analyzed models the structure of reality and reality as a world’s refl ection offered by Karl Popper, K. K. Kolin, R. Redfield, G. Roth. The attention was paid to the neurobiological model of subjective reality by V. Sergin, which proposed a hypothesis of automatic identification postulating a

  5. In vitro infection with HIV enables human CD4+ T cell clones to induce noncognate contact-dependent polyclonal B cell activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macchia, D; Parronchi, P; Piccinni, M P; Simonelli, C; Mazzetti, M; Ravina, A; Milo, D; Maggi, E; Romagnani, S

    1991-05-15

    Eleven (nine CD4+ and two CD8+) protein purified derivative-specific and eight tetanus toxoid-specific T cell clones (TCC), established from the peripheral blood of healthy persons, were cocultured in vitro with irradiated mononuclear cells from patients infected by HIV in the presence of PHA and polybrene. Two weeks post-HIV exposure, all 17 CD4+, but neither of the two CD8+, TCC exhibited integration of HIV in their genoma, as detected by polymerase chain reaction analysis, and released HIV into their supernatants, as detected by measuring both reverse transcriptase activity and p24 Ag. When co-cultured with either autologous or allogeneic B cells, all CD4+ HIV-infected TCC induced the synthesis of extraordinarily high amounts of IgM, IgG, and IgA. In contrast, their noninfected counterparts could provide helper function for Ig synthesis by autologous B cells only in the presence of the specific Ag (or anti-CD3 antibody), and induced allogeneic B cells to synthesize Ig only upon stimulation with anti-CD3 antibody. The supernatants of HIV-infected TCC failed to stimulate Ig synthesis in B cells. More importantly, when HIV-infected clonal T blasts and B cells were cultured in different chambers separated by a millipore membrane, permeable to molecules but not to cells, Ig synthesis did not occur. The Ig synthesis induced by HIV-infected TCC was also markedly inhibited by the addition in culture of either anti-CD4 or anti-LFA-1 antibody. In contrast, HIV-infected TCC maintained their ability to provide helper function for Ig synthesis in the absence of any stimulus, even after fixation with p-formaldehyde. These data demonstrate that in vitro infection with HIV enables human T cells to stimulate Ig synthesis by B cells by an Ag-nonspecific, MHC-unrestricted, contact-dependent mechanism. This may explain, at least in part, the hypergammaglobulinemia and other phenomena related to polyclonal B cell activation frequently seen in HIV-infected persons.

  6. Interference Control Modulations Over Conscious Perception

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Itsaso Colás

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The relation between attention and consciousness has been a controversial topic over the last decade. Although there seems to be an agreement on their distinction at the functional level, no consensus has been reached about attentional processes being or not necessary for conscious perception. Previous studies have explored the relation of alerting and orienting systems of attention and conscious perception, but the impact of the anterior executive attention system on conscious access remains unexplored. In the present study, we investigated the behavioral interaction between executive attention and conscious perception, testing control mechanisms both at stimulus-level representation and after error commission. We presented a classical Stroop task, manipulating the proportion of congruent and incongruent trials, and analyzed the effect of reactive and proactive control on the conscious perception of near-threshold stimuli. Reactive control elicited under high proportion congruent conditions influenced participants’ decision criterion, whereas proactive control elicited under low proportion congruent conditions was ineffective in modulating conscious perception. In addition, error commission affected both perceptual sensitivity to detect near-threshold information and response criterion. These results suggest that reactivation of task goals through reactive control strategies in conflict situations impacts decision stages of conscious processing, whereas interference control elicited by error commission impacts both perceptual sensitivity and decision stages of conscious processing. We discuss the implications of our results for the gateway hypothesis about attention and consciousness, as they showed that interference control (both at stimulus-level representation and after error commission can modulate the conscious access of near-threshold stimuli.

  7. Corpo, consciência e psicologia Body, consciousness and psychology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José Lino Oliveira Bueno

    1997-01-01

    Full Text Available Vários sistemas teóricos em ciências humanas não dissociam a característica biológica das características particularmente humanas. Um filósofo fenomenólogo ao examinar os fenômenos da consciência (Merleau-Ponty, um psicólogo marxista ao considerar os determinantes sociais da consciência humana (Luria ou um epistemólogo cognitivista ao examinar o desenvolvimento da inteligência (Piaget não só não desprezam os determinantes biológicos do psiquismo, mas, ainda, consideram que para se ter acesso a estes fenômenos chamados de ordem superior é preciso que se leve em conta o organismo nos seus componentes biológicos.Human science does not necessarily dissociate biological and specific human characteristics. Several theoretical systems vere reviewed: the phenomena of consciousness examined by phenomenologist Merleau-Ponty; the social determinants of human consciousness examined by the Marxist neuropsychologist Luria; the development of intellingence examined by cognitive epistemologist Piaget. These authors did not discard the biological determinants of the consciousness and considered that access to higher order phenomena is possible only involving the biological components of the organism.

  8. Equation for Consciousness in terms of Physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kodukula, Siva Prasad

    2012-11-01

    Based on the concepts 'Double Relativity Effectí. 'Film theory of the Universe ','Heart of the God model of the universeí and'Space time equivalenceí, it is concluded that consciousness is defined in terms of physics as Çthe electromagnetic field containing electromagnetic waves of velocity greater than that of light velocity.? Also it is concluded that because of this high velocity the cell or any living organism will get the perception of events before their happenings. This phenomenon is one of the properties of feeling which is a constituent of consciousness. The degree or strength of consciousness can be measured and defined as the distance of point of generation of conscious wave from the center of space time fluid related to consciousness (d). It can be measured by the equation VCW3.d2= Constant. Where 'VCWí is the velocity of consciousness wave observed. The unit of measurement for degree or strength of consciousness is 'conscious meterí.

  9. Neural plasticity lessons from disorders of consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Athena eDemertzi

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Communication and intentional behavior are supported by the brain’s integrity at a structural and a functional level. When widespread loss of cerebral connectivity is brought about as a result of a severe brain injury, in many cases patients are not capable of conscious interactive behavior and are said to suffer from disorders of consciousness (e.g., coma, vegetative state /unresponsive wakefulness syndrome, minimally conscious states. This lesion paradigm has offered not only clinical insights, as how to improve diagnosis, prognosis and treatment, but also put forward scientific opportunities to study the brain’s plastic abilities. We here review interventional and observational studies performed in severely brain-injured patients with regards to recovery of consciousness. The study of the recovered conscious brain (spontaneous and/or after surgical or pharmacologic interventions, suggests a link between some specific brain areas and the capacity of the brain to sustain conscious experience, challenging at the same time the notion of fixed temporal boundaries in rehabilitative processes. Altered functional connectivity, cerebral structural reorganization as well as behavioral amelioration after invasive treatments will be discussed as the main indices for plasticity in these challenging patients. The study of patients with chronic disorders of consciousness may, thus, provide further insights not only at a clinical level (i.e., medical management and rehabilitation but also from a scientific-theoretical perspective (i.e., the brain’s plastic abilities and the pursuit of the neural correlate of consciousness.

  10. An Exploration of Jane Eyre's Feminist Consciousness

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    吴伊璐

    2013-01-01

    In the novel Jane Eyre,Jane's feminist consciousness can be divided into three stages which involve her lasting struggle for fundamental equality,economic Independence and freedom of love. Throughout Jane's lifetime,the author expressed the awakening of feminist consciousness which encouraged those traditional females to pursue gender equality of love and expressed concern about the liberation of women and thoughts.

  11. [Analytical problems of altered states of consciousness].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frolov, M V

    1993-01-01

    Modified states of consciousness are created under the conditions of monotony with modulating influences in minute wave length diapason. These data point to an important role of the modulating system of the cerebral brain in consciousness the content of which is determined by informational processes.

  12. An integrative view on consciousness and introspection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Overgaard, Morten; Mogensen, Jesper

    2017-01-01

    The relation between first and higher order mental states is currently unknown. In particular, the relation between conscious experience and introspection is difficult as the same methods are used to investigate them. In order to make progress in the scientific understanding of consciousness...

  13. Neural plasticity lessons from disorders of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demertzi, Athena; Schnakers, Caroline; Soddu, Andrea; Bruno, Marie-Aurélie; Gosseries, Olivia; Vanhaudenhuyse, Audrey; Laureys, Steven

    2010-01-01

    Communication and intentional behavior are supported by the brain's integrity at a structural and a functional level. When widespread loss of cerebral connectivity is brought about as a result of a severe brain injury, in many cases patients are not capable of conscious interactive behavior and are said to suffer from disorders of consciousness (e.g., coma, vegetative state/unresponsive wakefulness syndrome, minimally conscious states). This lesion paradigm has offered not only clinical insights, as how to improve diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment, but also put forward scientific opportunities to study the brain's plastic abilities. We here review interventional and observational studies performed in severely brain-injured patients with regards to recovery of consciousness. The study of the recovered conscious brain (spontaneous and/or after surgical or pharmacologic interventions), suggests a link between some specific brain areas and the capacity of the brain to sustain conscious experience, challenging at the same time the notion of fixed temporal boundaries in rehabilitative processes. Altered functional connectivity, cerebral structural reorganization as well as behavioral amelioration after invasive treatments will be discussed as the main indices for plasticity in these challenging patients. The study of patients with chronic disorders of consciousness may, thus, provide further insights not only at a clinical level (i.e., medical management and rehabilitation) but also from a scientific-theoretical perspective (i.e., the brain's plastic abilities and the pursuit of the neural correlate of consciousness).

  14. Acting: An Altered State of Consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheiffele, Eberhard

    2001-01-01

    Uses notions from the field Psychology of Consciousness, including an explanation of how psychologists define and investigate Altered States of Consciousness (ASCs). Argues that actors routinely enter an ASC. Establishes acting as a way to enter an ASC and discusses why theater artists, educators, and advocates need to be aware of both the dangers…

  15. Altered States of Consciousness and Alcohol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Ben Morgan; And Others

    This document contains the reports of research at a symposium on "Altered States of Consciousness and Alcohol." The participants primarily agreed that alcohol induces an altered state of consciousness similar to other drugs, but that this phenomenon has not been explicitly stated due to the current interest in newer and more novel drugs. The…

  16. Disturbances of time consciousness from a phenomenological and a neuroscientific perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogeley, Kai; Kupke, Christian

    2007-01-01

    The subjective experience of time is a fundamental constituent of human consciousness and can be disturbed under conditions of mental disorders such as schizophrenia or affective disorders. Besides the scientific domain of psychiatry, time consciousness is a topic that has been extensively studied both by theoretical philosophy and cognitive neuroscience. It can be shown that both approaches exemplified by the philosophical analysis of time consciousness (Husserl) and the neuroscientific theory of cross-temporal contingencies (binding of cognitive processes over time) as the neurophysiological basis of human consciousness implemented in the prefrontal cortex (Fuster) converge in 2 respects. Firstly, a tripartite conception of consciousness divides human cognition in 3 different temporal domains comprising retention, presentation, and protention (Husserl) and the past, the present, and the future corresponding to working memory, interference control, and preparatory set (Fuster). Secondly, both concepts refer to the present as an extended duration that integrates information from the recent past and the future. We propose that the integration of phenomenological and neuroscientific approaches can stimulate the development of enriched pathophysiological concepts of mental disorders. This approach appears to be particularly fruitful with respect to schizophrenia that is interpreted as a structural disturbance of time consciousness.

  17. Mapping the functional connectome traits of levels of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amico, Enrico; Marinazzo, Daniele; Di Perri, Carol; Heine, Lizette; Annen, Jitka; Martial, Charlotte; Dzemidzic, Mario; Kirsch, Murielle; Bonhomme, Vincent; Laureys, Steven; Goñi, Joaquín

    2017-03-01

    Examining task-free functional connectivity (FC) in the human brain offers insights on how spontaneous integration and segregation of information relate to human cognition, and how this organization may be altered in different conditions, and neurological disorders. This is particularly relevant for patients in disorders of consciousness (DOC) following severe acquired brain damage and coma, one of the most devastating conditions in modern medical care. We present a novel data-driven methodology, connICA, which implements Independent Component Analysis (ICA) for the extraction of robust independent FC patterns (FC-traits) from a set of individual functional connectomes, without imposing any a priori data stratification into groups. We here apply connICA to investigate associations between network traits derived from task-free FC and cognitive/clinical features that define levels of consciousness. Three main independent FC-traits were identified and linked to consciousness-related clinical features. The first one represents the functional configuration of a "resting" human brain, and it is associated to a sedative (sevoflurane), the overall effect of the pathology and the level of arousal. The second FC-trait reflects the disconnection of the visual and sensory-motor connectivity patterns. It also relates to the time since the insult and to the ability of communicating with the external environment. The third FC-trait isolates the connectivity pattern encompassing the fronto-parietal and the default-mode network areas as well as the interaction between left and right hemispheres, which are also associated to the awareness of the self and its surroundings. Each FC-trait represents a distinct functional process with a role in the degradation of conscious states of functional brain networks, shedding further light on the functional sub-circuits that get disrupted in severe brain-damage. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  18. Volitional components of consciousness vary across wakefulness, dreaming and lucid dreaming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dresler, Martin; Eibl, Leandra; Fischer, Christian F J; Wehrle, Renate; Spoormaker, Victor I; Steiger, Axel; Czisch, Michael; Pawlowski, Marcel

    2014-01-01

    Consciousness is a multifaceted concept; its different aspects vary across species, vigilance states, or health conditions. While basal aspects of consciousness like perceptions and emotions are present in many states and species, higher-order aspects like reflective or volitional capabilities seem to be most pronounced in awake humans. Here we assess the experience of volition across different states of consciousness: 10 frequent lucid dreamers rated different aspects of volition according to the Volitional Components Questionnaire for phases of normal dreaming, lucid dreaming, and wakefulness. Overall, experienced volition was comparable for lucid dreaming and wakefulness, and rated significantly higher for both states compared to non-lucid dreaming. However, three subscales showed specific differences across states of consciousness: planning ability was most pronounced during wakefulness, intention enactment most pronounced during lucid dreaming, and self-determination most pronounced during both wakefulness and lucid dreaming. Our data confirm the multifaceted nature of consciousness: different higher-order aspects of consciousness are differentially expressed across different conscious states.

  19. Volitional components of consciousness vary across wakefulness, dreaming and lucid dreaming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin eDresler

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Consciousness is a multifaceted concept; its different aspects vary across species, vigilance states or health conditions. While basal aspects of consciousness like perceptions and emotions are present in many states and species, higher-order aspects like reflective or volitional capabilities seem to be most pronounced in awake humans. Here we assess the experience of volition across different states of consciousness: 10 frequent lucid dreamers rated different aspects of volition according to the Volitional Components Questionnaire for phases of normal dreaming, lucid dreaming and wakefulness. Overall, experienced volition was comparable for lucid dreaming and wakefulness, and rated significantly higher for both states compared to non-lucid dreaming. However, three subscales showed specific differences across states of consciousness: planning ability was most pronounced during wakefulness, intention enactment most pronounced during lucid dreaming, and self-determination most pronounced during both wakefulness and lucid dreaming. Our data confirm the multifaceted nature of consciousness: different higher-order aspects of consciousness are differentially expressed across different conscious states.

  20. Volitional components of consciousness vary across wakefulness, dreaming and lucid dreaming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dresler, Martin; Eibl, Leandra; Fischer, Christian F. J.; Wehrle, Renate; Spoormaker, Victor I.; Steiger, Axel; Czisch, Michael; Pawlowski, Marcel

    2014-01-01

    Consciousness is a multifaceted concept; its different aspects vary across species, vigilance states, or health conditions. While basal aspects of consciousness like perceptions and emotions are present in many states and species, higher-order aspects like reflective or volitional capabilities seem to be most pronounced in awake humans. Here we assess the experience of volition across different states of consciousness: 10 frequent lucid dreamers rated different aspects of volition according to the Volitional Components Questionnaire for phases of normal dreaming, lucid dreaming, and wakefulness. Overall, experienced volition was comparable for lucid dreaming and wakefulness, and rated significantly higher for both states compared to non-lucid dreaming. However, three subscales showed specific differences across states of consciousness: planning ability was most pronounced during wakefulness, intention enactment most pronounced during lucid dreaming, and self-determination most pronounced during both wakefulness and lucid dreaming. Our data confirm the multifaceted nature of consciousness: different higher-order aspects of consciousness are differentially expressed across different conscious states. PMID:24427149

  1. The compatibility between sociological and cognitive neuroscientific ideas on consciousness: is a neurosociology of consciousness possible?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shkurko, Yulia S

    2013-03-01

    This article considers the possibility of integrating sociological and cognitive neuroscience ideas on consciousness and developing a new research area: neurosociology of consciousnesses. Research was conducted taking into account the limited knowledge on consciousness produced in these disciplines and the necessity of finding ways to study the social roles concerning the neural correlates of consciousness. Applying several ideas on consciousness from these disciplines (intersubjectivity, close connection with collective forms representations, deriving awareness from the brain's processes, and so on), I show that it is difficult to reconcile the differences in the treatment of consciousness through the simple combination of the different ideas. The integration should be pursued in light of the neuroscientific findings concerning consciousness in different social contexts (role behavior, social interactions, and so on). In integrating the concepts, I predicted the role of time delay in conscious awareness in decision making, synchronization of neural oscillations under conscious perception, and the activations of certain brain zones in correspondence to different conscious cognitive processes for understanding in face-to-face situations. The study reveals that the optimal path for neurosociological research on consciousness is in its primary development without a rigid binding to either sociology or neuroscience.

  2. An introduction to the biology of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delacour, J

    1995-09-01

    This paper summarizes the main steps in a scientific study of consciousness. From a survey of the recent literature, it appears that: (1) there is a clear tendency to consider consciousness as a scientific object; (2) consistent subjective and objective descriptions of consciousness are possible; an intentional-modeling structure accounts for its main features; (3) from the evolutionary biology standpoint, conscious cognitive activities, as based on models of the self, the world and the alter-ego, have a functional value; (4) the material basis of consciousness can be clarified without recourse to new properties of the matter or to quantum physics. Current neurobiology, based on classical macrophysics, appears able to handle the problem. In this scope, the neurobiology of sleep-wakefulness and attention, and neuropsychology, have already achieved substantial advances.

  3. Volition and the Function of Consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lau, Hakwan C.

    What are the psychological functions that could only be performed consciously? People have intuitively assumed that many acts of volition are not influenced by unconscious information. These acts range from simple examples such as making a spontaneous motor movement, to higher cognitive control. How ever, the available evidence suggests that under suitable conditions, unconscious information can influence these behaviors and the underlying neural mechanisms. One possibility is that stimuli that are consciously perceived tend to yield strong signals in the brain, which makes us think that consciousness has the function of such strong signals. However, if we could create conditions where the stimuli could yield strong signals but not the conscious experience of perception, perhaps we would find that such stimuli are just as effective in influencing volitional be havior. Future studies that focus on clarifying this issue may tell us what the defining functions of consciousness are.

  4. Hypnosis phenomenology and the neurobiology of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rainville, Pierre; Price, Donald D

    2003-04-01

    Recent developments in the philosophical and neurobiological studies of consciousness provide promising frameworks to investigate the neurobiology of hypnosis. A model of consciousness phenomenology is described to demonstrate that the experiential dimensions characterizing hypnosis (relaxation and mental ease, absorption, orientation and monitoring, and self-agency) reflect basic phenomenal properties of consciousness. Changes in relaxation-mental ease and absorption, produced by standard hypnotic procedures, are further associated with changes in brain activity within structures critically involved in the basic representation of the body-self and the regulation of states of consciousness. The combination of experiential and modern brain imaging methods offers a unique perspective on hypnotic phenomena and provides new observations consistent with the proposition that hypnosis is an altered state of consciousness.

  5. Conscious sedation: a dying practice?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manickam, Palaniappan; Kanaan, Ziad; Zakaria, Khalid

    2013-07-28

    Sedation practices vary according to countries with different health system regulations, the procedures done, and local circumstances. Interestingly, differences in the setting in which the practice of gastroenterology and endoscopy takes place (university-based vs academic practice) as well as other systematic practice differences influence the attitude of endoscopists concerning sedation practices. Conscious sedation using midazolam and opioids is the current standard method of sedation in diagnostic and therapeutic endoscopy. Interestingly, propofol is a commonly preferred sedation method by endoscopists due to higher satisfaction rates along with its short half-life and thus lower risk of hepatic encephalopathy. On the other hand, midazolam is the benzodiazepine of choice because of its shorter duration of action and better pharmacokinetic profile compared with diazepam. The administration of sedation under the supervision of a properly trained endoscopist could become the standard practice and the urgent development of an updated international consensus regarding the use of sedative agents like propofol is needed.

  6. Making CSB + -Trees Processor Conscious

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Samuel, Michael; Pedersen, Anders Uhl; Bonnet, Philippe

    2005-01-01

    Cache-conscious indexes, such as CSB+-tree, are sensitive to the underlying processor architecture. In this paper, we focus on how to adapt the CSB+-tree so that it performs well on a range of different processor architectures. Previous work has focused on the impact of node size on the performance...... of the CSB+-tree. We argue that it is necessary to consider a larger group of parameters in order to adapt CSB+-tree to processor architectures as different as Pentium and Itanium. We identify this group of parameters and study how it impacts the performance of CSB+-tree on Itanium 2. Finally, we propose...... a systematic method for adapting CSB+-tree to new platforms. This work is a first step towards integrating CSB+-tree in MySQL’s heap storage manager....

  7. An enzymatic deglycosylation scheme enabling identification of core fucosylated N-glycans and O-glycosylation site mapping of human plasma proteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hägglund, Per; Matthiesen, R.; Elortza, F.;

    2007-01-01

    between the two N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc) residues in the conserved N-glycan core structure, leaving single GlcNAc residues with putative fucosyl side chains attached to the peptide. To enable digestion of complex and hybrid type N-glycans, a number of exoglycosidases (β-galactosidase, neuraminidase...

  8. The Development of a Diagnostic-Prescriptive Tool for Undergraduates Seeking Information for a Social Science/Humanities Assignment. III. Enabling Devices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cole, Charles; Cantero, Pablo; Ungar, Andras

    2000-01-01

    This article focuses on a study of undergraduates writing an essay for a remedial writing course that tested two devices, an uncertainty expansion device and an uncertainty reduction device. Highlights include Kuhlthau's information search process model, and enabling technology devices for the information needs of information retrieval system…

  9. Conciliating cognition and consciousness: the perceptual foundations of clinical reasoning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braude, Hillel D

    2012-10-01

    Clinical reasoning has been defined as a form of cognition applied to evaluating and managing a patient's medical problem. As a kind of cognition, a product of the human psyche, it is logical to expect that clinical reasoning should be best understood through methods derived from psychology, neuropsychology and the cognitive sciences. However, the application of scientific methods to evaluating clinical reasoning is unable to analyse clinical reasoning in terms of first-person experience and consciousness. By reducing clinical reasoning to its cognitive components the cognitivist approach tends to ignore the larger context in which clinical reasoning occurs. By reducing its conception of clinical reasoning to its cognitive components, the neuropsychological approach fails to acknowledge clinical reasoning as a form of intentionality, a gestalt, grounded in human perception. A full epistemology of clinical reasoning requires a phenomenological analysis that can make sense of the relation between pre-reflective consciousness and explicit forms of knowing. In this paper I conciliate cognition and consciousness in medicine through analysing the phenomenology of perception in clinical reasoning. I compare the application of phenomenology to clinical reasoning with the attempt to model clinical reasoning on Aristotelian practical wisdom or phronesis. Finally, I analyse empathy as a type of perception critical for effective clinical interaction and exemplary for reflecting on perception as the intersubjective foundation of clinical reasoning.

  10. Hypnosis and top-down regulation of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terhune, Devin B; Cleeremans, Axel; Raz, Amir; Lynn, Steven Jay

    2017-02-04

    Hypnosis is a unique form of top-down regulation in which verbal suggestions are capable of eliciting pronounced changes in a multitude of psychological phenomena. Hypnotic suggestion has been widely used both as a technique for studying basic science questions regarding human consciousness but also as a method for targeting a range of symptoms within a therapeutic context. Here we provide a synthesis of current knowledge regarding the characteristics and neurocognitive mechanisms of hypnosis. We review evidence from cognitive neuroscience, experimental psychopathology, and clinical psychology regarding the utility of hypnosis as an experimental method for modulating consciousness, as a model for studying healthy and pathological cognition, and as a therapeutic vehicle. We also highlight the relations between hypnosis and other psychological phenomena, including the broader domain of suggestion and suggestibility, and conclude by identifying the most salient challenges confronting the nascent cognitive neuroscience of hypnosis and outlining future directions for research on hypnosis and suggestion.

  11. Is Brain in a Superfluid State? Physics of Consciousness

    CERN Document Server

    Chakraverty, Benoy

    2010-01-01

    The article "Physics of Consciousness" treats mind as an abstract Hilbert space with a set of orthogonal base vectors to describe information like particles, which are considered to be the elementary excitation of a quantum field. A non-Hermitian operator of Self is introduced to create these information like particles which in turn will constitute a coherent information field. The non - zero average of this self operator is shown to constitute our basic I. Awareness and consciousness is described very simply as a response function of these operators to external world. We show with a very simple neural model how a baby less than two years old develop self-awareness as the neural connectivity achieves a critical value. The all-important I is the basic cognitive order parameter of each human brain and is a result of thermodynamic phase transition from a chaotic disordered state to a symmetry broken coherent ordered state, very akin to physics of superfluidity.

  12. The Union of Spirit and Matter: Science, Consciousness, and a Life Divine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lynda Lester

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available The once unbridgeable chasm between spirit and matter is closing. While the scientific method and scientific materialism have brought untold benefits to humanity, quantum physics has changed our view of matter as solid, objective, and obvious to a view that is more complex and which includes the possibility that consciousness has a part in manifesting reality. This shift mirrors Sri Aurobindo’s integral philosophy, which states that the universe is a manifestation of consciousness. This manifestation occurs through a process of involution followed by evolution, the next step of which is the emergence of a suprahumanity whose native state of consciousness will be supramental. Interestingly, some of Mother Mirra Alfassa’s experiences in bringing supramental consciousness into her body bear similarities to the discoveries of quantum physics. Unlike previous spiritual realizations, the supramental realization has the power to unify spirit and matter and usher in a life divine on earth.

  13. States of consciousness experimental insights into meditation, waking, sleep and dreams

    CERN Document Server

    Cvetkovic, Dean

    2011-01-01

    In this accessible overview of current knowledge, an expert team of editors and authors describe experimental approaches to consciousness. These approaches are shedding light on some of the hitherto unknown aspects of the distinct states of human consciousness, including the waking state, different states of sleep and dreaming, meditation and more. The book presents the latest research studies by the contributing authors, whose specialities span neuroscience, neurology, biomedical engineering, clinical psychology and psychophysiology, psychosocial medicine and anthropology. Overall this anthology provides the reader with a clear picture of how different states of consciousness can be defined, experimentally measured and analysed. A future byproduct of this knowledge may be anticipated in the development of systematic corrective treatments for many disorders and pathological problems of consciousness.

  14. The nose and altered states of consciousness: Tascodrugites and Ezekiel

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John J. Pilch

    2002-11-01

    Full Text Available The Church Father Epiphanius' description of the Tascodrugite practice of placing the forefinger on the nostril during prayer call be plausibly interpreted as a strategy for inducing an altered state of consciousness (ASC. Anthropological and neurophysiological research on how this human gesture achieves such an effect which is a pan-human potential suggests a similar plausible interpretation for Ezekiel 8:17 and the experience of Jesus in the Garden on the night of his arrest (Luke 22:43-44.

  15. A mathematical model of embodied consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudrauf, David; Bennequin, Daniel; Granic, Isabela; Landini, Gregory; Friston, Karl; Williford, Kenneth

    2017-09-07

    We introduce a mathematical model of embodied consciousness, the Projective Consciousness Model (PCM), which is based on the hypothesis that the spatial field of consciousness (FoC) is structured by a projective geometry and under the control of a process of active inference. The FoC in the PCM combines multisensory evidence with prior beliefs in memory and frames them by selecting points of view and perspectives according to preferences. The choice of projective frames governs how expectations are transformed by consciousness. Violations of expectation are encoded as free energy. Free energy minimization drives perspective taking, and controls the switch between perception, imagination and action. In the PCM, consciousness functions as an algorithm for the maximization of resilience, using projective perspective taking and imagination in order to escape local minima of free energy. The PCM can account for a variety of psychological phenomena: the characteristic spatial phenomenology of subjective experience, the distinctions and integral relationships between perception, imagination and action, the role of affective processes in intentionality, but also perceptual phenomena such as the dynamics of bistable figures and body swap illusions in virtual reality. It relates phenomenology to function, showing the computational advantages of consciousness. It suggests that changes of brain states from unconscious to conscious reflect the action of projective transformations and suggests specific neurophenomenological hypotheses about the brain, guidelines for designing artificial systems, and formal principles for psychology. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Assessing levels of consciousness with symbolic analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, UnCheol; Blain-Moraes, Stefanie; Mashour, George A

    2015-02-13

    'Covert consciousness' is a state in which consciousness is present without the capacity for behavioural response, and it can occur in patients with intraoperative awareness or unresponsive wakefulness syndrome. To detect and prevent this undesirable state, it is critical to develop a reliable neurobiological assessment of an individual's level of consciousness that is independent of behaviour. One such approach that shows potential is measuring surrogates of cortical communication in the brain using electroencephalography (EEG). EEG is practicable in clinical application, but involves many fundamental signal processing problems, including signal-to-noise ratio and high dimensional complexity. Symbolic analysis of EEG can mitigate these problems, improving the measurement of brain connectivity and the ability to successfully assess levels of consciousness. In this article, we review the problem of covert consciousness, basic neurobiological principles of consciousness, current methods of measuring brain connectivity and the advantages of symbolic processing, with a focus on symbolic transfer entropy (STE). Finally, we discuss recent advances and clinical applications of STE and other symbolic analyses to assess levels of consciousness. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  17. Testosterone affects gaze aversion from angry faces outside of conscious awareness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terburg, David; Aarts, Henk; van Honk, Jack

    2012-05-01

    Throughout vertebrate phylogeny, testosterone has motivated animals to obtain and maintain social dominance-a fact suggesting that unconscious primordial brain mechanisms are involved in social dominance. In humans, however, the prevailing view is that the neocortex is in control of primordial drives, and testosterone is thought to promote social dominance via conscious feelings of superiority, indefatigability, strength, and anger. Here we show that testosterone administration in humans prolongs dominant staring into the eyes of threatening faces that are viewed outside of awareness, without affecting consciously experienced feelings. These findings reveal that testosterone motivates social dominance in humans in much the same ways that it does in other vertebrates: involuntarily, automatically, and unconsciously.

  18. Conscious motor processing and movement self-consciousness: two dimensions of personality that influence laparoscopic training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malhotra, Neha; Poolton, Jamie M; Wilson, Mark R; Fan, Joe K M; Masters, Rich S W

    2014-01-01

    Identifying personality factors that account for individual differences in surgical training and performance has practical implications for surgical education. Movement-specific reinvestment is a potentially relevant personality factor that has a moderating effect on laparoscopic performance under time pressure. Movement-specific reinvestment has 2 dimensions, which represent an individual's propensity to consciously control movements (conscious motor processing) or to consciously monitor their 'style' of movement (movement self-consciousness). This study aimed at investigating the moderating effects of the 2 dimensions of movement-specific reinvestment in the learning and updating (cross-handed technique) of laparoscopic skills. Medical students completed the Movement-Specific Reinvestment Scale, a psychometric assessment tool that evaluates the conscious motor processing and movement self-consciousness dimensions of movement-specific reinvestment. They were then trained to a criterion level of proficiency on a fundamental laparoscopic skills task and were tested on a novel cross-handed technique. Completion times were recorded for early-learning, late-learning, and cross-handed trials. Propensity for movement self-consciousness but not conscious motor processing was a significant predictor of task completion times both early (p = 0.036) and late (p = 0.002) in learning, but completion times during the cross-handed trials were predicted by the propensity for conscious motor processing (p = 0.04) rather than movement self-consciousness (p = 0.21). Higher propensity for movement self-consciousness is associated with slower performance times on novel and well-practiced laparoscopic tasks. For complex surgical techniques, however, conscious motor processing plays a more influential role in performance than movement self-consciousness. The findings imply that these 2 dimensions of movement-specific reinvestment have a differential influence in the learning and updating

  19. Quantum reality explains mystical powers of consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Mensky

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Mystical powers of consciousness, including the direct vision of truth and management a reality, are believed to exist. Various directions of spiritual knowledge, including world religions, deal with these phenomena. Many people are persuaded that mystical events cannot be explained by scientific methods, that they contradict to science. Suggested by the present author Quantum Concept of Consciousness, or Extended Everett Concept, proves that mystical powers have their origin from what is known in quantum mechanics as quantum reality, and therefore are inherent part of science. Therefore, the “mystical” aspect in the sphere of consciousness is a common part of science and spiritual knowledge.

  20. The cognitive approach to conscious machines

    CERN Document Server

    Haikonen, Pentti O

    2003-01-01

    Could a machine have an immaterial mind? The author argues that true conscious machines can be built, but rejects artificial intelligence and classical neural networks in favour of the emulation of the cognitive processes of the brain-the flow of inner speech, inner imagery and emotions. This results in a non-numeric meaning-processing machine with distributed information representation and system reactions. It is argued that this machine would be conscious; it would be aware of its own existence and its mental content and perceive this as immaterial. Novel views on consciousness and the mind-

  1. What about pain in disorders of consciousness?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnakers, C; Chatelle, C; Demertzi, A; Majerus, S; Laureys, S

    2012-09-01

    The management and treatment of acute pain is very difficult in non-communicative patients with disorders of consciousness (i.e., vegetative state/unresponsive wakefulness syndrome (VS/UWS) and minimally conscious state), creating an ethical dilemma for caregivers and an emotional burden among both relatives and caregivers. In this review, we summarize recent findings about the neural substrates of nociception and pain in VS/UWS patients as well as recent behavioral assessment methods of nociception specifically designed for patients in altered states of consciousness. We will finally discuss implications for pain treatment in these patients.

  2. HOW COULD CONSCIOUS EXPERIENCES AFFECT BRAINS?

    OpenAIRE

    Velmans, Professor Max

    2002-01-01

    In everyday life we take it for granted that we have conscious control of some of our actions and that the part of us that exercises control is the conscious mind. Psychosomatic medicine also assumes that the conscious mind can affect body states, and this is supported by evidence that the use of imagery, hypnosis, biofeedback and other ‘mental interventions’ can be therapeutic in a variety of medical conditions. However, there is no accepted theory of mind/body interaction and this has had...

  3. Can a machine be conscious? How?

    OpenAIRE

    Harnad, Stevan

    2003-01-01

    A "machine" is any causal physical system, hence we are machines, hence machines can be conscious. The question is: which kinds of machines can be conscious? Chances are that robots that can pass the Turing Test -- completely indistinguishable from us in their behavioral capacities -- can be conscious (i.e. feel), but we can never be sure (because of the "other-minds" problem). And we can never know HOW they have minds, because of the "mind/body" problem. We can only know how they pass the Tu...

  4. Time and Consciousness in Cognitive Naturalism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandro Nannini

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Eliminative materialists argue that we can overcome the phenomenological gap between two different ways of referring to our subjective experiences – either as introspectively grasped in terms of folk psychology or as explained in neurological terms – by abandoning the pre-scientific concepts of folk psychology. However, unless these theorists can offer a plausible explanation for why the scientific view of the human mind proposed by cognitive neuroscience is so deeply counter-intuitive, this argument will remain unconvincing. In order to address the difficulties involved in making the paradigm shift from folk psychology to cognitive neuroscience I (a briefly review the theoretical revolution that marked the transition from classical mechanics to the theory of relativity at the beginning of 20th century; (b identify some similarities between this paradigm shift in physics and the birth of a new scientific view of the mind; (c explain by means of (a and (b why neurological theories that reduce consciousness and the Self to aspects of brain dynamics appear implausible from a common sense perspective despite being sound from a scientific point of view.

  5. Phenomenology of consciousness from apprehension to judgment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arecchi, F Tito

    2011-07-01

    We explore two different moments of human cognition, namely apprehension (A), whereby a coherent perception emerges by recruitment of large neuron groups and judgment (B), whereby memory retrieval of different (A) units coded in a suitable language and comparison of them leads to the formulation of a judgment. The first one has a duration around 1 sec (from 0.5 to 3 sec), it appears as an a-temporal present and its neural correlate is a wide synchronization in the EEG gamma band. It may be described as an interpretation of sensorial stimuli in terms of some stored algorithm, via a Bayes procedure. The second one entails the comparison of two apprehensions acquired at different times, coded in a given language, and retrieved by memory. It lasts around 3 sec and requires self-consciousness, as the judging agent must be well aware that he/she is the same one who faces the two coded apprehensions under scrutiny in order to extract a mutual relation. At variance with (A), (B) does not presuppose an algorithm, but it rather builds a new behavioural model by an inverse Bayes procedure. It will be shown how this build up of a novel model is related to creativity and free will.

  6. The "conscious pilot"-dendritic synchrony moves through the brain to mediate consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hameroff, Stuart

    2010-01-01

    Cognitive brain functions including sensory processing and control of behavior are understood as "neurocomputation" in axonal-dendritic synaptic networks of "integrate-and-fire" neurons. Cognitive neurocomputation with consciousness is accompanied by 30- to 90-Hz gamma synchrony electroencephalography (EEG), and non-conscious neurocomputation is not. Gamma synchrony EEG derives largely from neuronal groups linked by dendritic-dendritic gap junctions, forming transient syncytia ("dendritic webs") in input/integration layers oriented sideways to axonal-dendritic neurocomputational flow. As gap junctions open and close, a gamma-synchronized dendritic web can rapidly change topology and move through the brain as a spatiotemporal envelope performing collective integration and volitional choices correlating with consciousness. The "conscious pilot" is a metaphorical description for a mobile gamma-synchronized dendritic web as vehicle for a conscious agent/pilot which experiences and assumes control of otherwise non-conscious auto-pilot neurocomputation.

  7. Forming Historical Consciousness – Towards a Humanistic History Didactics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jörn Rüsen

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper present  some reflexions between History Didactics and a new concept of  Humanism. It shows among other questions the challenges of nowadays historical culture, which come from the growth of the interculturality and communication in all  dimensions of pratical human life. To develop the argumentation it has been necessary to clarify some categories like History Didactics, Historical consciousness, Historical culture, Historical  learning and Humanism. Moreover, to answer the challenges, one has developed the idea of a new humanism and its implications for historical learning. The paper also discutes how to learn Universal History means the understanding that the unity of historical time within the diversity of historical experience and how it could be a contribution for people to learn to be human.

  8. Consciousness as a State of Matter

    CERN Document Server

    Tegmark, Max

    2014-01-01

    We examine the hypothesis that consciousness can be understood as a state of matter, "perceptronium", with distinctive information processing abilities. We explore five basic principles that may distinguish conscious matter from other physical systems such as solids, liquids and gases: the information, integration, independence, dynamics and utility principles. If such principles can identify conscious entities, then they can help solve the quantum factorization problem: why do conscious observers like us perceive the particular Hilbert space factorization corresponding to classical space (rather than Fourier space, say), and more generally, why do we perceive the world around us as a dynamic hierarchy of objects that are strongly integrated and relatively independent? Tensor factorization of matrices is found to play a central role, and our technical results include a theorem about Hamiltonian separability (defined using Hilbert-Schmidt superoperators) being maximized in the energy eigenbasis. Our approach g...

  9. Industrial Application Of Environmentally Conscious Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McAloone, Timothy Charles

    This book is an adaptation of the author’s PhD thesis, in which he explored environmentally conscious design in the electrical/electronics industry sector. In this new and rapidly evolving field, existing research has not yet sought to understand the causes of success and the problems experienced...... when companies have integrated environmental considerations into the design process.In the context of advanced practitioners of environmentally conscious design in the Western European and North American electrical/electronics industry sector, it is shown that:- the timing of environmental decisions...... in the design process is key to environmentally conscious design;- the environmental profile of a product is affected the most in the very early stages of the design process, particularly in the pre-specification stage, where tools for environmentally conscious design decision-making are lacking...

  10. The merit of synesthesia for consciousness research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tessa Marije Van Leeuwen

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Synesthesia is a phenomenon in which additional perceptual experiences are elicited by sensory stimuli or cognitive concepts. Synesthetes possess a unique type of phenomenal experiences not directly triggered by sensory stimulation. Therefore, for better understanding of consciousness it is relevant to identify the mental and physiological processes that subserve synesthetic experience. In the present work we suggest several reasons why synesthesia has merit for research on consciousness. We first review the research on the dynamic and rapidly growing field of the studies of synesthesia. We particularly draw attention to the role of semantics in synesthesia, which is important for establishing synesthetic associations in the brain. We then propose that the interplay between semantics and sensory input in synesthesia can be helpful for the study of the neural correlates of consciousness, especially when making use of ambiguous stimuli for inducing synesthesia. Finally, synesthesia-related alterations of brain networks and functional connectivity can be of merit for the study of consciousness.

  11. The merit of synesthesia for consciousness research

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuwen, T.M. van; Singer, W.; Nikolic, D.

    2015-01-01

    Synesthesia is a phenomenon in which additional perceptual experiences are elicited by sensory stimuli or cognitive concepts. Synesthetes possess a unique type of phenomenal experiences not directly triggered by sensory stimulation. Therefore, for better understanding of consciousness it is relevant

  12. The Merit of Synesthesia for Consciousness Research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Leeuwen, Tessa M; Singer, Wolf; Nikolić, Danko

    2015-01-01

    Synesthesia is a phenomenon in which additional perceptual experiences are elicited by sensory stimuli or cognitive concepts. Synesthetes possess a unique type of phenomenal experiences not directly triggered by sensory stimulation. Therefore, for better understanding of consciousness it is relevant to identify the mental and physiological processes that subserve synesthetic experience. In the present work we suggest several reasons why synesthesia has merit for research on consciousness. We first review the research on the dynamic and rapidly growing field of the studies of synesthesia. We particularly draw attention to the role of semantics in synesthesia, which is important for establishing synesthetic associations in the brain. We then propose that the interplay between semantics and sensory input in synesthesia can be helpful for the study of the neural correlates of consciousness, especially when making use of ambiguous stimuli for inducing synesthesia. Finally, synesthesia-related alterations of brain networks and functional connectivity can be of merit for the study of consciousness.

  13. [Nursing education: integrating gender equity consciousness].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tzeng, Ya-Ling; Shih, Hsin-Hsin; Yang, Ya-Ling

    2011-12-01

    Gender sensitivity influences the way a nurse handles the nursing process and can influence both patient care and public perception of the nursing profession. Nurses unaware of the influences of gender are unable to perform holistic nursing, the practice of which centers on patient-centered care. Education is essential to promote gender consciousness. Providing scenario-based education to apply gender consciousness can help nursing students integrate gender and nursing care concepts and improve nursing care quality. In addition to raising attention to this important issue, this article makes comprehensive suggestions on how to apply gender concepts in nursing education. These suggestions include requiring instructors to consider and assess their own gender consciousness in order to enhance positive gender consciousness; reviewing teaching materials to identify and remove content tainted by sexual discrimination, and emphasizing gender education in the nursing education curriculum.

  14. Searching for Global Consciousness: A 17-Year Exploration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bancel, Peter A

    2016-12-18

    The Global Consciousness Project (GCP) maintains a long-term experiment that investigates the possibility of a subtle connection between the collective mental activity of humans and the physical behavior of systems in the surrounding environment. The Project formulates this proposition as a broad hypothesis that relates the output of true random number generators (RNGs) to times of intense, collective mental attention during major world events. Over 17 years, the hypothesis has been tested on nearly 500 events, yielding a cumulative result that rejects the null hypothesis by seven standard deviations, apparently lending strong support to the proposal of global consciousness. However, an alternate interpretation is that the result is due to an anomalous effect associated with persons directly engaged with the experiment. This article examines these interpretations and finds that the data do not support the global consciousness proposal. Rather, analyses indicate that the GCP result is due to a goal-oriented effect associated with individuals, similar to effects reported in prior research that studies subject engagement with RNG outputs. An operational definition of goal-oriented effects is presented, which allows for explicit tests of the data. All of the tests favor the interpretation of a goal-oriented effect.

  15. Electrocortical (EEG correlates of music and states of consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lazar Skaric

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available The study of the perception of music is a paramount example of multidisciplinary research. In spite of a lot of theoretical and experimental efforts to understand musical processing, attempts to localize musical abilities in particular brain regions were largely unsuccessful, save for the difference between musicians and non musicians, especially in hemispheric specialization and in EEG correlational dimensions. Having in mind that human emotional response to music and to art in general is limbic dependent, this motivated us to address our question to a similar possible neurobiological origin of musicogenic altered states of consciousness and its possible EEG correlates, “resonantly” induced by deep spiritual music. For example, as in sound-induced altered states of consciousness cultivated in some Eastern yogic practices. The musicogenic states of consciousness are evaluated within a group of 6 adults, upon the influence of 4 types of spiritual music. The most prominent changes in theta or alpha frequency bands were induced in two subjects, upon the influence of Indian spiritual music, Bhajan.

  16. Mythology, Weltanschauung, symbolic universe and states of consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    2016-01-01

    This article investigates whether different religious (mythological) worldviews can be described as alternative and altered states of consciousness (ASCs). Differences between conscious and unconscious motivations for behaviour are discussed before looking at ASCs, Weltanschauung and symbolic universes. Mythology can be described both as Weltanschauung and symbolic universe, functioning on all levels of consciousness. Different Weltanschauungen constitute alternative states of consciousness. ...

  17. Tess's Female Consciousness in Tess of the D'Urbervilles

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    郭丽英

    2016-01-01

    Tess of the D'Urbervilles is the representative work of Thomas Hardy, an outstanding realistic writer in the nineteenth century's literary world. In his work, Hardy has created a new image filled with female consciousness,Tess. This paper just focuses on the study of Tess's female consciousness, from the following aspects: consciousness of self-reliance, consciousness of protest.

  18. Organising to Enable Innovation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brink, Tove

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this conceptual paper is to reveal how organising can enable innovation across organisational layers and organisational units. This approach calls for a cross-disciplinary literature review. The aim is to provide an integrated understanding of innovation in an organisational approa...... of explorative and exploitative learning in uncertain environments. Shedding light on the cross-disciplinary theories to organise innovation provides a contribution at the firm level to enable innovation.......The purpose of this conceptual paper is to reveal how organising can enable innovation across organisational layers and organisational units. This approach calls for a cross-disciplinary literature review. The aim is to provide an integrated understanding of innovation in an organisational approach....... The findings reveal a continous organising process between individual/ team creativity and organisational structures/control to enable innovation at firm level. Organising provides a dynamic approach and contains the integrated reconstruction of creativity, structures and boundaries for enhanced balance...

  19. Altered states of consciousness in small animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Platt, Simon

    2014-11-01

    Impaired states of consciousness can be relatively easily identified, although it can occasionally be difficult to assess whether there is a pure disorder of wakefulness or awareness. Regardless, such impairments represent dysfunction of the brainstem and or cerebrum. Acute and severe impairments of consciousness can require immediate assessment, in part currently performed using the modified Glasgow coma scoring system, and emergency stabilization. The prognosis is always guarded and highly sensitive to the underlying etiology. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Brain, conscious experience and the observing self

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baars, Bernard J.; Ramsøy, Thomas; Laureys, Steven

    2003-01-01

    stimulus identification as such. What is the role of those regions? Parietal cortex support the 'first person perspective' on the visual world, unconsciously framing the visual object stream. Some prefrontal areas select and interpret conscious events for executive control. Such functions can be viewed...... as properties of the subject, rather than the object, of experience - the 'observing self' that appears to be needed to maintain the conscious state...

  1. The Merit of Synesthesia for Consciousness Research

    OpenAIRE

    van Leeuwen, Tessa M.; Singer, Wolf; Nikolić, Danko

    2015-01-01

    Synesthesia is a phenomenon in which additional perceptual experiences are elicited by sensory stimuli or cognitive concepts. Synesthetes possess a unique type of phenomenal experiences not directly triggered by sensory stimulation. Therefore, for better understanding of consciousness it is relevant to identify the mental and physiological processes that subserve synesthetic experience. In the present work we suggest several reasons why synesthesia has merit for research on consciousness. We ...

  2. Free will, consciousness and self

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bertelsen, Preben

    What is it to be human? How do we relate to the world, to each other and to our self in a human way – in everyday life and when faced with life’s big questions? In this book, the author develops a general theoretical model that might be able to offer a better understanding of the human condition...

  3. Incompatibility between Self-Observing Consciousness and the Axioms of Quantum theory

    CERN Document Server

    Song, Daegene

    2007-01-01

    Based on the standard axioms of quantum theory, we provide a counter-example which invalidates the full compatibility between consciousness and quantum theory. In particular, we present an example of a natural phenomenon in which an observer's the mental state can be fully described in mathematical terms analogous to the state vector that is being observed. This mathematical description of the observer's mental state enables us to examine consciousness within the standard axioms of quantum theory. The separation between the observing party and the physical system being observed, imposed by the axiom of quantum theory, poses a problem when the observer is observing his own mental state, i.e., self-observing consciousness.

  4. Counterfeits or Shanzhai? The Role of Face and Brand Consciousness in Luxury Copycat Consumption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Ling; Shan, Juan

    2016-08-01

    This study responds to the emergence of the Shanzhai phenomenon in the international marketplace and introduces the Shanzhai phenomenon into the consumer behavior literature by defining it and comparing it with well-known concepts like luxury counterfeits. More specifically, it examines how consumers' face and brand consciousness influence their willingness to buy luxury counterfeits rather than Shanzhai products. The results show that consumers who are more face conscious are more likely to choose luxury counterfeits than Shanzhai products. In addition, consumers' face consciousness elicits a high concern for well-known brands, which also in turn leads to a more favorable attitude toward luxury counterfeits than Shanzhai products. These findings enable researchers to better understand consumers' responses toward both Shanzhai and counterfeit products and help companies that are protecting their original brands to tailor their consumer-directed measures more effectively.

  5. What kind of consciousness is minimal?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotchoubey, Boris; Vogel, Dominik; Lang, Simone; Müller, Friedemann

    2014-01-01

    A comparison between unitary and non-unitary views on minimal consciousness. First, unitary (all-or-none) and non-unitary (gradual or continuous) models of consciousness are defined as they have been developed in both philosophy and neurophysiology. Then, the implications of these ideas to the notion the minimally conscious state (MCS) are discussed. Review and analysis of theoretical conceptions and empirical data. Both kinds of models are compatible with the actual definitions of MCS. Although unitary views may seem to contradict the description of the MCS in 'Neurology' 2002, the apparent contradiction can easily be solved. Most recent data, particularly those obtained using fMRI and concerning learning, emotional responsiveness and pain and suffering, speak for non-unitary models. Most evidence speaks for non-unitary models of minimal consciousness. If these models are correct, patients with MCS may have, in addition to temporal fluctuations, a lower level of consciousness compared with fully conscious individuals. A still lower level could characterize patients diagnosed as unresponsive wakefulness syndrome (UWS). From this point of view, therefore, the difference between UWS and MCS is gradual rather than qualitative. However, due to methodological limitations of the available studies, the evidence for non-unitary models cannot be regarded as definite.

  6. The function of consciousness in multisensory integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Terry D; Ramsey, Ashley K

    2012-12-01

    The function of consciousness was explored in two contexts of audio-visual speech, cross-modal visual attention guidance and McGurk cross-modal integration. Experiments 1, 2, and 3 utilized a novel cueing paradigm in which two different flash suppressed lip-streams cooccured with speech sounds matching one of these streams. A visual target was then presented at either the audio-visually congruent or incongruent location. Target recognition differed for the congruent versus incongruent trials, and the nature of this difference depended on the probabilities of a target appearing at these respective locations. Thus, even though the lip-streams were never consciously perceived, they were nevertheless meaningfully integrated with the consciously perceived sounds, and participants learned to guide their attention according to statistical regularities between targets and these unconsciously perceived cross-modal cues. In Experiment 4, McGurk stimuli were presented in which the lip-streams were either flash suppressed (4a) or unsuppressed (4b), and the McGurk effect was found to vanish under conditions of flash suppression. Overall, these results suggest a simple yet fundamental principle regarding the function of consciousness in multisensory integration - cross-modal effects can occur in the absence of consciousness, but the influencing modality must be consciously perceived for its information to cross modalities.

  7. Intuitive decisions on the fringes of consciousness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark C. Price

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Decision making research often dichotomises between more deliberative, cognitive processes and more heuristic, intuitive and emotional processes. We argue that within this two-systems framework (e.g., Kahneman, 2002 there is ambiguity over how to map the System 1/System 2 axis, and the notion of intuitive processing, onto the distinction between conscious and non-conscious processes. However the convergent concepts of experience-based metacognitive judgements (Koriat, 2007 and of fringe consciousness (Mangan, 1993 can clarify intuitive processing as an informative extit{conscious feeling} without conscious access to the antecedents of the feeling. We stress that these intuitive feelings can be used to guide behaviour in a controlled and contextually sensitive manner that would not be permitted by purely non-conscious influences on behaviour. An outline is provided for how to empirically recognise these intuitive feelings. This is illustrated with an example from research on implicit learning where intuitive feelings may play an important role in peoples' decisions and judgements. Finally we suggest that our approach to understanding intuitive feelings softens rather than reinforces the two-systems dichotomy.

  8. [Recovery of consciousness: process-oriented approach].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gusarova, S B

    2014-01-01

    Traditionally psychological neurorehabilitation of neurosurgical patients is provided subject to availability of clear consciousness and minimal potential to communicate verbally. Cognitive and emotional disorders, problems in social adaptation, neurotic syndromes are normally targets in such cases. We work with patients having survived severe brain damage being in different states of consciousness: vegetative state, minimal state of consciousness, mutism, confusion, posttraumatic Korsaroff syndrom. Psychologist considers recovery of consciousness as the target besides traditional tasks. Construction of communication with patient is central part of such job, where the patient remains unable to contact verbally, yet it is impossible to consider potential aphasia. This is a non-verbal "dialogue" with patient created by psychologist with gradual development and involving other people and objects of environment. Inline with modern neuroscientific achievements demonstrating ability to recognize by patients with severe brain injury (A. Owen, S. Laureys, M. Monti, M. Coleman, A. Soddu, M. Boly and others) we base upon psychological science, on psychotherapeutic approaches containing instruments inevitable to work with patients in altered states of consciousness and creation of non-verbal communication with patient (Jung, Reich, Alexander, Lowen, Keleman, Arnold and Amy Mindell, S. Tomandl, D. Boadella, A. Längle, P. Levin etc). This article will include 15 years of experience to apply Process-oriented approach by A. Mindell to recovery of consciousness of neurosurgical patients based on work with "minimal signals" (micro moves, breath, mimic reactions etc.), principle of feedback, psychosomatic resonance, empathy.

  9. Postprandial hemodynamics in the conscious rat

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anzueto Hernandez, L.; Kvietys, P.R.; Granger, D.N.

    1986-07-01

    The postprandial intestinal hyperemia was studied in conscious and anesthetized rats using the radioactive microsphere technique. Carbohydrate, protein, lipid, and mixed meals, and the vehicle (Tyrode's solution), were placed in the stomach via a gastrostomy tube. In conscious rats, blood flow increased by 40-80% in the duodenum and jejunum 1 h after either a carbohydrate, lipid, protein, or mixed meal. Tyrode's solution produced a comparable hyperemia. Blood flow in the distal bowel segments (ileum, cecum, and colon) was significantly increased only by Tyrode's solution and the carbohydrate meal. The proximal intestinal hyperemia produced by the mixed meal in conscious animals was significantly attenuated by vagotomy yet unaltered by atropine pretreatment. In contrast to the results obtained from conscious rats, the mixed meal did not significantly alter intestinal blood flow in anesthetized animals. The results of this study indicate that the postprandial intestinal hyperemia is much greater in conscious than anesthetized animals. This difference may result from the higher resting blood flows in the latter group. The hyperemic response in conscious animals may be mediated by the vagus nerve.

  10. Signal detection theory, the exclusion failure paradigm and weak consciousness--evidence for the access/phenomenal distinction?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irvine, Elizabeth

    2009-06-01

    Block [Block, N. (2005). Two neural correlates of consciousness. Trends in Cognitive Science, 9, 46-52] and Snodgrass (2006) claim that a signal detection theory (SDT) analysis of qualitative difference paradigms, in particular the exclusion failure paradigm, reveals cases of phenomenal consciousness without access consciousness. This claim is unwarranted on several grounds. First, partial cognitive access rather than a total lack of cognitive access can account for exclusion failure results. Second, Snodgrass's Objective Threshold/Strategic (OT/S) model of perception relies on a problematic 'enable' approach to perception that denies the possibility of intentional control of unconscious perception and any effect of following different task instructions on the presence/absence of phenomenal consciousness. Many of Block's purported examples of phenomenal consciousness without cognitive access also rely on this problematic approach. Third, qualitative difference paradigms may index only a subset of access consciousness. Thus, qualitative difference paradigms like exclusion failure cannot be used to isolate phenomenal consciousness, any attempt to do so still faces serious methodological problems.

  11. Consciousness Can Change the Output Signals of a Solar Cell and the Photoelectric Conversion Equation of Slow Mass Wave

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Dayong

    2009-03-01

    The experiment's results show that human consciousness can change output signals such as Voc (open-circuit voltage) and Isc (short circuit current) of a solar cell placed some distance from a participant. For the first time, a consciousness signal is able to be recorded through the experiment conducted in Oct 2002. The order and rhythm of the changing wave pattern of Voc is related to the action of consciousness. The order and rhythm of slow brain signal of ERP and EEG are related to the cognized objects. Consciousness is independent and self-determined while brain signal is passive and driven. Consciousness is spiritual and Intelligence while brain signal is physical, corporality and mechanic. So consciousness is different from the brain signal. And consciousness effection is different from physical effection of light. Because consciousness can choose the object which it acts on. The light have a pairt of mass wave of low frequency and energy wave of high frequency. In photoelectric conversion process, We only use the energy wave to get the η (photoelectric transformation efficiency) which is little. If being used a pairt of wave, we will get a larger η. The photoelectric conversion equation of slow mass wave are being put forward.

  12. Erotic Narration, Historical Consciousness and Human Nature Writing Based on Novels by Jiangsu Writers Adapted into Films%情欲叙事、历史意识与人性书写——以江苏作家小说的电影改编为例

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    周根红

    2012-01-01

    Since the 1990s, some novels by Jiangsu writers have been adapted into films, exerting great influence in Chinese film circles. These films attempt to highlight narration of lust and consumption of the body, weakening or strengthening historical consciousness, or adapting novel subjects to complete the writing of human nature and achieve the unity of films, market, mainstream consciousness and the director' s own spirit.%20世纪90年代以来,一批江苏作家的小说纷纷被改编成电影,在中国影坛产生了极为广泛的影响。这些根据江苏作家小说改编的电影,或者突出小说中的情欲叙事与身体消费,或者虚化小说的历史意识,或者强化小说的历史意识,或者改编小说主题,完成人性书写,以实现电影与市场、主流意识、导演个体精神的统一。

  13. MYTHOLOGIC AND DESTRUCTION OF THE SCIENTIFIC AND ARCHAIC CONSCIOUSNESS (TRAVELING TO SOURCES OF PRESOCRATIC THINKING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. B. Okorokov

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. The purpose of research consists in that: having plunged into depths of primitive consciousness (using the recipe of many thinkers of non-classical philosophy, to reveal contradiction of the European thought (at its sources in Ancient Greek thought and show resources of mythological thinking on the way of overcoming of these contradictions. Methodology. All methodological installations, using possibilities, borderlines and effects of non-classical consciousness, have appeared insufficiently effective for adequate understanding of essence of the person. The generalised method, which is used by us, leans on deep resources of high-energy consciousness and on decoding of possibilities of anthropological time that it presumes to open new horizons of human existence. Originality. Addressing to modern representations about the changed conditions of consciousness, we have tried to see the historically generated discursive practices of understanding reality by the consciousness (including the historical one. Thus, using the consistently conducted destruction we are aimed at reaching the first sources of consciousness and revealing the deep historical mechanisms of temporal consciousnesses formation (as far as it possible in the modern conditions. Conclusions. It is shown that the use of the basic ideas of Ancient Greek thought leads scientific consciousness to deadlocks of contradictions, which were consistently revealed during subsequent history of philosophy and culture. The analysis of ancient mythological texts allows concluding, that the Greek thought is not a source of modern scientific thought. That is to understand the scientific thought one should address to the more ancient archaic thinking. Thus, to overcome the contradictions of modern scientific and philosophical thought it is necessary to search new alternative (more ancient sources of understanding of the historical reality, first of all, connected with deepening into ancient

  14. Decoding the dynamics of action, intention, and error detection for conscious and subliminal stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles, Lucie; King, Jean-Rémi; Dehaene, Stanislas

    2014-01-22

    How do we detect our own errors, even before we receive any external feedback? One model hypothesizes that error detection results from the confrontation of two signals: a fast and unconscious motor code, based on a direct sensory-motor pathway; and a slower conscious intention code that computes the required response given the stimulus and task instructions. To test this theory and assess how the chain of cognitive processes leading to error detection is modulated by consciousness, we applied multivariate decoding methods to single-trial magnetoencephalography and electroencephalography data. Human participants performed a fast bimanual number comparison task on masked digits presented at threshold, such that about half of them remained unseen. By using both erroneous and correct trials, we designed orthogonal decoders for the actual response (left or right), the required response (left or right), and the response accuracy (correct or incorrect). While perceptual stimulus information and the actual response hand could be decoded on both conscious and non-conscious trials, the required response could only be decoded on conscious trials. Moreover, whether the current response was correct or incorrect could be decoded only when the target digits were conscious, at a time and with a certainty that varied with the amount of evidence in favor of the correct response. These results are in accordance with the proposed dual-route model of conscious versus nonconscious evidence accumulation, and suggest that explicit error detection is possible only when the brain computes a conscious representation of the desired response, distinct from the ongoing motor program.

  15. Neural Correlates of Contents and Levels of Consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    Overgaard, Morten; Overgaard, Rikke

    2010-01-01

    Experimental investigations of the neural substrate of consciousness typically take one of two paths, studying (1) contents or (2) levels of consciousness. It seems obvious to most that these two “paths” are interrelated, yet much less obvious how. This paper gives one suggestion to grasp the interrelation, arguing that conscious levels are determined by conscious contents in a very specific way. It follows from the argument that conscious contents are so-called natural kinds, whereas conscio...

  16. Networks of conscious experience: computational neuroscience in understanding life, death, and consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leisman, Gerry; Koch, Paul

    2009-01-01

    We demonstrate brain locations appearing to correlate with consciousness, but not being directly responsible for it. Technology reveals that brain activity is associated with consciousness but is not equivalent to it. We examine how consciousness occurs at critical levels of complexity. Conventional explanations portray consciousness as an emergent property of classical computer-like activities in the brain's neural networks. Prevailing views in this camp are that patterns of neural network activities correlate with mental states, that synchronous network oscillations in the thalamus and cerebral cortex temporally bind information, and that consciousness emerges as a novel property of computational complexity among neurons. A hard-wired theory is enigmatic for explaining consciousness because the nature of subjective experience, or 'qualia'- 'inner life' - is a "hard problem" to understand; binding spatially distributed brain activity into unitary objects, and a coherent sense of self, or 'oneness' is difficult to explain as is the transition from pre- to conscious states. Consciousness is non-computable and involves factors that are neither random nor algorithmic - consciousness cannot be simulated; explanations are also needed for free will and for subjective time flow. Convention argues that neurons and their chemical synapses are the fundamental units of information in the brain, and that conscious experience emerges when a critical level of complexity is reached in the brain's neural networks. The basic idea is that the mind is a computer functioning in the brain. In fitting the brain to a computational view, such explanations omit incompatible neurophysiological details, including widespread apparent randomness at all levels of neural processes (is it really noise, or underlying levels of complexity?); glial cells (which account for some 80% of the brain); dendritic-dendritic processing; electrotonic gap junctions; cytoplasmic/cytoskeletal activities; living

  17. The human lactase persistence-associated SNP -13910*T enables in vivo functional persistence of lactase promoter-reporter transgene expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Lin; Ahn, Jong Kun; Wodziak, Dariusz; Sibley, Eric

    2012-07-01

    Lactase is the intestinal enzyme responsible for digestion of the milk sugar lactose. Lactase gene expression declines dramatically upon weaning in mammals and during early childhood in humans (lactase nonpersistence). In various ethnic groups, however, lactase persists in high levels throughout adulthood (lactase persistence). Genetic association studies have identified that lactase persistence in northern Europeans is strongly associated with a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) located 14 kb upstream of the lactase gene: -13910*C/T. To determine whether the -13910*T SNP can function in vivo to mediate lactase persistence, we generated transgenic mice harboring human DNA fragments with the -13910*T SNP or the ancestral -13910*C SNP cloned upstream of a 2-kb rat lactase gene promoter in a luciferase reporter construct. We previously reported that the 2-kb rat lactase promoter directs a post-weaning decline of luciferase transgene expression similar to that of the endogenous lactase gene. In the present study, the post-weaning decline directed by the rat lactase promoter is impeded by addition of the -13910*T SNP human DNA fragment, but not by addition of the -13910*C ancestral SNP fragment. Persistence of transgene expression associated with the -13910*T SNP represents the first in vivo data in support of a functional role for the -13910*T SNP in mediating the human lactase persistence phenotype.

  18. Spin-Mediated Consciousness Theory Possible Roles of Oxygen Unpaired Electronic Spins and Neural Membrane Nuclear Spin Ensemble in Memory and Consciousness

    CERN Document Server

    Hu, H; Hu, Huping; Wu, Maoxin

    2002-01-01

    We postulate that consciousness is connected to quantum mechanical spin since said spin is embedded in the microscopic structure of spacetime and may be more fundamental than spacetime itself. Thus, we theorize that consciousness is connected with the fabric of spacetime through spin. That is, spin is the "pixel" and "antenna" of mind. The unity of mind is achieved by non-local means within the pre-spacetime domain interfaced with spacetime. Human mind is possible because of the particular structures and dynamics of our brain postulated working as follows: The unpaired electronic spins of highly lipid-soluble and rapidly diffusing oxygen molecules extract information from the dynamical neural membranes and communicate said information through strong spin-spin couplings to the nuclear spin ensemble in the membranes for consciousness-related quantum statistical processing which survives decoherence. In turn, the dynamics of the nuclear spin ensemble has effects through spin chemistry on the classical neural act...

  19. Toward a Unified Consciousness Theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Richard H.

    1977-01-01

    The beginning of a holistic theory that can treat paranormal phenomena as normal human development is presented. Implications for counseling, counselor education, and counselor supervision are discussed. (Author)

  20. The Nordic Housing Enabler

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Helle, Tina; Slaug, Bjørn; Brandt, Åse

    2010-01-01

    This study addresses development of a content valid cross-Nordic version of the Housing Enabler and investigation of its inter-rater reliability when used in occupational therapy rating situations, involving occupational therapists, clients and their home environments. The instrument was translated...... from the original Swedish version of the Housing Enabler, and adapted according to accessibility norms and guidelines for housing design in Sweden, Denmark, Finland and Iceland. This iterative process involved occupational therapists, architects, building engineers and professional translators......, resulting in the Nordic Housing Enabler. For reliability testing, the sampling strategy and data collection procedures used were the same in all countries. Twenty voluntary occupational therapists, pair-wise but independently from each other, collected data from 106 cases by means of the Nordic Housing...