G K GRAY
gord at homostudy.win_uk.net
Mon Apr 8 12:45:01 EST 1996
In article <4k6tua$i0u at newsbf02.news.aol.com>, Zamanlf (zamanlf at aol.com) writes:
> Again, yet another personal attack, instead of objectively
>discussing the issue of how Verzeano's findings can be explained in
>electromagnetic terms. Personal Attack! Personal attack! Personal attack!
>Don't let the idea get out.
> The presentation of the ideas in this forum on electromagnetic
>brain waves, as brief as they indeed have been, has been much clearer and
>objective than the smoke and mirrors coming from Buenos Aires, et al. Not
>once have they addressed the subject of Verzeano's findings, which are
>what I am talking about. The empirical evidence is there, but it is
>unexplained by any existing model or theory. The critics don't want to
>talk about the evidence, however, or the fact that it cannot presently be
>explained by any theory of nervous system.
Reply to; gord at homostudy.win-uk.net
Progress in this field will remain nil,trapped in this
personalised "screaming match" until there is clearer understanding
of the physics involved. In this respect the Buenos Aires people
have the right outlook - empirical detail alone is not good enough,
indeed it is the curse of current neuroscience because there seems
to be a pathological fear of theory, of model building on solidly
established physical theory.
The absurdity of the "insulation" notion of myelin, for
example, becomes obvious when we think through the physical
chemistry of the lipids which form the major part of every cell
membrane. The carboxyl group (COOH), which is strongly hydrophilic,
always attracts water, so always faces towards water that
incidentally carries electrolytes so is therefore and electrical
conductor. On the other hand, the hydrocarbon tails that are firmly
attached to the carboxyls are not only strongly *hydrophobic*, so
always turn away from the same water. The result is that in effect
the cell membrane embodies what is to be seen as a contradiction in
terms - at once both insulator and conductor in the same functional
entity. The embedded structures - rectifiers, gates, etc., which
are minimally necessary for metabolism, but may have other more
specialised functions, do not override this.
The glial cells that form myelin are in effect
extending "fingers of a glove" wrapped around the axon. The liquid
inside, like the intercellular fluid, contains electrolytes so it
forms the 2nd fo the two electrodes of the capacitor.
The function of a myelin sheath cannot be that of an
insulator for yet another reason which I have not seen mentioned:
- If it is a insulator like the insulation on a wire, why are not
all axons thus insulated? We do not see it in networks like the
retina, and it appears to be unnecessary for muscle fibres which
also discharge electrically in the manner of neurons.
One final point concerns nerve trunks. The relative
regularity of their internal spacing of axons approaches that of a
crystal in which electrical resonances can take place. Hence we
are in no position to exclude these *a priori*.
The foregoing discussion, which is specifically about
myelin, has been presented as an example of the type of questioning
that is needed before we can advance very far into the more arcane
discussions we have been trying to hold.
More information about the Neur-sci