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Review
, 7 (20), 585

The Finer Scale of Consciousness: Quantum Theory

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Review

The Finer Scale of Consciousness: Quantum Theory

Tianwen Li et al. Ann Transl Med.

Abstract

Consciousness is a multidisciplinary problem that has puzzled all human beings since the origin of human life. Being defined in various pointcuts by philosophers, biologists, physicists, and neuroscientists, the definitive explanation of consciousness is still suspending. The nature of consciousness has taken great evolution by centering on the behavioral and neuronal correlates of perception and cognition, for example, the theory of Neural Correlates of Consciousness, the Global Workspace Theory, the Integrated Information Theory. While tremendous progress has been achieved, they are not enough if we are to understand even basic facts-how and where does the consciousness emerge. The Quantum mechanics, a thriving branch of physics, has an inseparable relationship with consciousness (e.g., observer effect) since Planck created this subject and its derived quantum consciousness theory can perfectly fill this gap. In this review, we briefly introduce some consciousness hypotheses derived from quantum mechanics and focus on the framework of orchestrated objective reduction (Orch-OR), including its principal points and practicality.

Keywords: Consciousness; microtubule; orchestrated objective reduction theory (Orch-OR theory); quantum mechanics; uncertainty principle.

Conflict of interest statement

Conflicts of Interest: The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Schematic diagram of dendrons and psychons of layer V pyramidal cells. Each triangle represents a pyramidal cell, and the ascending lines extending from the top of triangles are apical dendrites. Light spots (arrowhead), which are transported along apical dendrites with different colors, represent different kinds of psychons that could give rise to unique experiences. The dendrites cluster automatically while ascending to the superficial layer of cortex to configure dendrons (circle) according to the different psychons they transmit. Additionally, pyramidal cells are divided into different groups based on the distinct conscious experiences that they process (37).
Figure 2
Figure 2
Conceptual graph of quantum space-time structure. The quantum particle vibrates from the start point O. Based on the uncertainty principle, the superposed condition of the particle determines that there are two possible tracks of particle progress in 3-dimensional xyz space. The orange and green large arrow indicates time, the fourth dimension. The initial variance between the two tracks is tiny (O point), but over time, the variance increases. One of its possible tracks would disappear after reaching the threshold at the moment of Orch-OR, leaving the other as certain and valid. The blue panel is the conscious moment of Orch-OR (44).
Figure 3
Figure 3
Neurons with gap junctions and microtubules. Left: schematic of the morphology of adjacent neurons. Microtubules in the soma and dendrites are clustered randomly and multi-oriented, while their counterparts in axons stretch from the axon hillock to the terminal in the same direction. Upper right: the magnified version of box 1 in the left graph. The gap junctions link nearby dendrites of different neurons, which make instantaneous interneuronal communication possible. Lower right: the magnified version of box 2 in the left graph. Microtubules in axons are regularly arranged in the same direction interconnected by microtubule-associated proteins (69).
Figure 4
Figure 4
Orch-OR event. Minor tubulins begin with classical computing (green tubulins in M1), which leads to quantum coherent superposition and quantum computing (expanding of green tubulins in M2 and M3). When the critical threshold of coherence to quantum gravity is met, Orch-OR will occur; thus, the entire condition of the microtubule returns to the original pattern (M4). The conscious Orch-OR event occurs in the M3 to M4 transition. The area under the curve represents superposed mass energy E with self-collapse time T, which is consistent with the formula of E = ℏ/T. E may be described as Nt, the number of tubulins whose mass separation (and separation of underlying space time) for time T will self-collapse. Hameroff posited that T =25 ms (e.g., 40 Hz oscillations), Nt =2×1010 tubulins (69,78). M1, microtubule state 1; M2, microtubule state 2; M3, microtubule state 3; M4, microtubule state 4.

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