The mitochondrion as a flip-flop memory element in neurons

Harry Erwin, Ph. D. harry at dherwin.org
Thu Dec 21 17:44:40 EST 2000

Andrew Gyles <syzygium at alphalink.com.au> wrote:

> In article <1elvopp.snxjvnl41l6eN%harry at dherwin.org>,
>   harry at dherwin.org (Harry Erwin, Ph. D.) wrote:
> > Andrew Gyles <syzygium at alphalink.com.au> wrote:
> >
> > What's this about volleys? By the time a primary neuron recovers and
> is
> > ready to generate another action potential, the event is usually past
> > and done with. Of course, my interest is echolocating bats, with pulse
> > generation rates ranging up to 200/second. Think about it.
> And my interest is in memory, and in the neural correlates of
> consciousness or awareness that some workers have tentatively connected
> with the 'gamma' oscillations in some groups of neurons.
> Is 'memory past and done with' by the time a primary neuron recovers?
> Is awareness similarly something that lasts only an instant?

Excellent questions and much deeper than can be addressed here. However,
I suspect that you will eventually find that most sensory stimuli are
expressed in patterns of action potentials generated as singletons. Note
that such patterns (made up of singletons) can be slowed in their
expression without losing coherence by inhibitory reafference and can be
likewise accelerated by excitatory reafference. Then there is some
evidence that the replay of events associated with long term memory
occurs at several times real-time, so I suspect your interest in volleys
is a blind alley.

Harry Erwin, PhD, <mailto:harry at dherwin.org>, 
Senior Lecturer in Computing at the University of Sunderland, 
Computational Neuroscientist (modeling bat behavior) and 
Senior SW Analyst and Security Engineer. 

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