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Bacteria Use Brainlike Bursts of Electricity to Communicate
#1
Paging Max! :-)
Bacteria Use Brainlike Bursts of Electricity to Communicate

https://www.quantamagazine.org/bacteria-...-20170905/

Quote:With electrical signals, cells can organize themselves into complex societies and negotiate with other colonies.

Quote:As in all communities, cohabiting bacteria need ways to exchange messages. Biologists have known for decades that bacteria can use chemical cues to coordinate their behavior. The best-known example, elucidated by Bonnie Bassler of Princeton University and others, is quorum sensing, a process by which bacteria extrude signaling molecules until a high enough concentration triggers cells to form a biofilm or initiate some other collective behavior.

But Süel and other scientists are now finding that bacteria in biofilms can also talk to one another electrically. Biofilms appear to use electrically charged particles to organize and synchronize activities across large expanses. This electrical exchange has proved so powerful that biofilms even use it to recruit new bacteria from their surroundings, and to negotiate with neighboring biofilms for their mutual well-being.
"Life is a pure flame, and we live by an invisible Sun within us."

  -Thomas Browne
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#2
Reminds me of the trees, the mycelium, the mushrooms...a coordinated network driven by electrical pulse with an incredible amount of power available for our use "Above all, when Stamets completes our vision of the world by helping us understand the role of fungi, even a scientist trained in a reductionist tradition can understand that the soil is a living organism whose life is intertwined with the life of the plants and animals that live in it and on it"

Paul Stamets
Existence is not subject to time; time is subject to Existence.
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#3
(10-10-2017, 12:41 AM)Sciborg_S_Patel Wrote: Paging Max! :-)
Bacteria Use Brainlike Bursts of Electricity to Communicate

https://www.quantamagazine.org/bacteria-...-20170905/

I haven't read it... ...always a bit frustrated when they refer only to 'electrically' or 'chemically', which is the usual way to describe how the brain works, and that they stay away from what we would understand as EM fields... or something field-like that we would understand only as a way of describing something which connects up within spacetime.

Fields are such an enormous part of physics, and there is now so much evidence for field effects acting upon organisms, it's so disappointing that they continue to keep anything to do with 'intelligent-type' processes isolated from fields - you know, the 'brain is isolated' type rubbish.

Dr Adrian Thompson already demonstrated bizarre field effects in evolvable hardware years ago, suggesting that he's tapped into something intrinsic in nature. The key to harnessing what he discovered seems to require the development of a substrate with plasticity, unlike a silicone chip, and more towards a brain. It's the substrate which needs to be plastic, fields just seem capable of working cooperatively on their own.
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#4
(10-13-2017, 12:18 PM)Max_B Wrote: I haven't read it... ...always a bit frustrated when they refer only to 'electrically' or 'chemically', which is the usual way to describe how the brain works, and that they stay away from what we would understand as EM fields... or something field-like that we would understand only as a way of describing something which connects up within spacetime.

Fields are such an enormous part of physics, and there is now so much evidence for field effects acting upon organisms, it's so disappointing that they continue to keep anything to do with 'intelligent-type' processes isolated from fields - you know, the 'brain is isolated' type rubbish.

Dr Adrian Thompson already demonstrated bizarre field effects in evolvable hardware years ago, suggesting that he's tapped into something intrinsic in nature. The key to harnessing what he discovered seems to require the development of a substrate with plasticity, unlike a silicone chip, and more towards a brain. It's the substrate which needs to be plastic, fields just seem capable of working cooperatively on their own.

I've read in several places that tests have shown that nerve "impulses" are not electrical in nature as the brain lacks the ability to create electricity. For example in the Journal of NeuroPhysiology. Lots of references in book "your Eternal Self", by Craig Hogan.

The proof of this was that scientists looked for even the slightest temperature variation within nerve bundles and found none. The conclusion was that no heat, means no current or resultant voltage drop due to resistance, and all this means mean no electricity. Which mean that the information is conducted by some other means.
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#5
(10-13-2017, 12:51 PM)jkmac Wrote: I've read in several places that tests have shown that nerve "impulses" are not electrical in nature as the brain lacks the ability to create electricity. For example in the Journal of NeuroPhysiology. Lots of references in book "your Eternal Self", by Craig Hogan.

The proof of this was that scientists looked for even the slightest temperature variation within nerve bundles and found none. The conclusion was that no heat, means no current or resultant voltage drop due to resistance, and all this means mean no electricity. Which mean that the information is conducted by some other means.

I was interested in delving into this a little further.

From http://www.mind.ilstu.edu/curriculum/neu..._intro.php:  

Quote:"To achieve long distance, rapid communication, neurons have evolved special abilities for sending electrical signals (action potentials) along axons. This mechanism, called conduction, is how the cell body of a neuron communicates with its own terminals via the axon. Communication between neurons is achieved at synapses by the process of neurotransmission.

To begin conduction, an action potential is generated near the cell body portion of the axon. An action potential is an electrical signal very much like the electrical signals in electronic devices. But whereas an electrical signal in an electronic device occurs because electrons move along a wire, an electrical signal in a neuron occurs because ions move across the neuronal membrane. Ions are electrically charged particles. The protein membrane of a neuron acts as a barrier to ions. Ions move across the membrane through ion channels that open and close due to the presence of neurotransmitter. When the concentration of ions on the inside of the neuron changes, the electrical property of the membrane itself changes. Normally, the membrane potential of a neuron rests as -70 millivolts (and the membrane is said to be polarized). The influx and outflux of ions (through ion channels during neurotransmission) will make the inside of the target neuron more positive (hence, de-polarized). When this depolarization reaches a point of no return called a threshold, a large electrical signal is generated. This is the action potential. 
 
This signal is then propagated along the axon (and not, say, back to its dendrites) until it reaches its axon terminals. An action potential travels along the axon quickly, moving at rates up to 150 meters (or roughly 500 feet) per second. Conduction ends at the axon terminals. Axon terminals are where neurotransmission begins. Hence, it is at axon terminals where the neuron sends its OUTPUT to other neurons. At electrical synapses, the OUTPUT will be the electrical signal itself. At chemical synapses, the OUTPUT will be neurotransmitter."

It appears that the actual signal impulse propagated along the axon between the neuron body and the synaptic junction is a relatively slow ionic chemical "wave" involving a change in electrical potential between the axon surface and interior not involving a net electrical current along the axon. When it gets to the synaptic junction, the signal propagates across the junction either chemically or electrically. In the human brain it appears to be mostly chemical propagation across the synapse.

Anyway, the process seems to be basically chemical and ionic, but still generating electrical voltage and corresponding minute electric field signals, as well known from EEG results measuring various electrical signals via scalp electrodes. 

Some studies have also shown the ability of the brain to affect its own activity through these minute electric fields, as in epileptic seizures. What studies haven't shown, and which appears very unlikely, is that after great attenuation by distance and intervening structures such resultingly exceedingly minute signals can affect other brains.
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#6
(10-13-2017, 07:08 PM)nbtruthman Wrote: I was interested in delving into this a little further.

From http://www.mind.ilstu.edu/curriculum/neu..._intro.php:  


It appears that the actual signal impulse propagated along the axon between the neuron body and the synaptic junction is a relatively slow ionic chemical "wave" involving a change in electrical potential between the axon surface and interior not involving a net electrical current along the synapse. When it gets to the synaptic junction, the signal propagates across the junction either chemically or electrically. In the human brain is appears to be mostly chemical propagation across the synapse.

Anyway, the process seems to be basically chemical and ionic, but still generating electrical voltage and corresponding minute electric field signals, as well known from EEG results measuring various electrical signals via scalp electrodes. 

Some studies have also shown the ability of the brain to affect its own activity through these minute electric fields, as in epileptic seizures. What studies haven't shown, and which appears very unlikely, is that after great attenuation by distance and intervening structures such resultingly exceedingly minute signals can affect other brains.

Hey great work nb. Very interesting. 

It is looks like a long series of individual actions that cascade. I guess I would analogize to a set of dominoes which is very unlike a stream of electrons, which are more like water in a pipe moving from a source to a destination.
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#7
(10-10-2017, 12:41 AM)Sciborg_S_Patel Wrote: Paging Max! :-)
Bacteria Use Brainlike Bursts of Electricity to Communicate

https://www.quantamagazine.org/bacteria-...-20170905/

The research is interesting. Apparently bacteria in biofilms utilize positively charged ion channels for electro-chemical communication somewhat similarly to animal neurons. It has been theorized that the bacterial mechanism may the ultimate ancestor of the animal cell neuron design. Further, apparently there is research that suggests that bacteria can affect their animal host for their benefit, by changing appetite or mood, perhaps through the bacterial ion-channel communication system.
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