the liver and the brain

ZZBunker zzbunker at netscape.net
Fri Sep 3 16:20:46 EST 2004

iain.macmillan at health.wa.gov.au (Iain Macmillan) wrote in message news:<e64c6c5f.0409030701.1e61d249 at posting.google.com>...
> Matthew Kirkcaldie <m.kirkcaldie at removethis.unsw.edu.au> wrote in message news:<m.kirkcaldie-FC9A38.12461403092004 at tomahawk.comms.unsw.edu.au>...
> > In article <363d693e.0409021806.4347802e at posting.google.com>,
> >  rscanlon at nycap.rr.com (ray scanlon) wrote:
> > 
> > > I know that it is difficult for a man, who has spent his lifetime cataloguing
> > > trees, to listen when he is told that he is surrounded by a forest.
> > > Nevertheless, that's the way it is.
> > > 
> > > You must try.
> > 
> > What a pompous, patronising attitude.  I hope you enjoy your insular 
> > world of self-importance - it's clear you are incapable of learning, 
> > since you already have all the answers.  It's a pity that people who've 
> > spent their lives studying these things seriously don't agree with you, 
> > but clearly you're more comfortable with your smug generalisations than 
> > the hard light of real-world phenomena and evidence.
> > 
> > Please don't bore us with your posturing, we've seen it all before.  If 
> > you're willing to discuss something seriously, please do so.
> > 
> >       MK.
> Apologies for a lurker (a biological psychiatrist)posting to this
> erudite discussion. The original post referred to the brain and the
> liver. I thought it might be useful to contrast the brain with the
> heart.
> The human heart was long regarded as the seat of all sorts of mystical
> and or magical forces, until a chap called William Harvey worked out
> that it is, in fact, a pump. Since then, over the past three hundred
> and odd years, the mechanism of the heart's pump action has been
> worked out - how the complex interlinked muscle fibres contract, how
> the timing of these contractions is regulated, and, most importantly
> for therapeutics, how these effects can be modified by drugs etc.
> I think it's reasonable to say that the heart as an organ is pretty
> well understood, despite its being essentially a vast, intricate
> network of cells which would be pointless to map exactly.
> My thoughts are that the brain is a squishy organ, pretty similar in
> size to the heart, with wiring, support structures and areas whose
> individual function is pretty well understood - visual pathways etc.
> Bits of brain develop with time and experience, bits seem to stop
> working (eg DLPFC in depression, Drevets et al. Nature) and other bits
> seem to depend critically for their function on vascular factors,
> which appear to be of great importance in the development of at least
> some brain diseases.
> A patient with heart failure in 1610 might have cough, chest pain and
> swollen ankles. Eminent physicians of the time might see chest pain as
> important, and treat with aspirin, cough as important and treat with
> opiates, or swollen ankles as important and treat with leeches - all
> of which treatments would be likely to produce benefits, but not with
> the mechanisms or for the reasons the treating physicians would give.
> My hope is that the equivalent conceptual leap for the brain that
> Harvey made for the heart is near, and that the lag in translating it
> into a clear understanding of how the brain "works" is less than the
> three hundred years it took for Harvey's work to be translated into
> precise understanding.

  Since Einstein and Goedel, *all by themselves*, have already 
  firmly established how the brain "works". Micro-"biologists" 
  don't have to fret their tiny minds, over such heady issues,
  as how the brain "works". Since the brain "works" 
  iff it is  firmly attached some thermo-dynamic 
  pump such as a heart.

  Since for one, Goedel has proved that the 
  "precise" "understanding" doesn't exist,
  in two completely different ways. 

  It is time-wise inconclusive. 
  It is space-wise irreducible.

  Which can be put in micro-biology terms as 
  what chemisty, in it's entirety, explains
  about brain function, only explains it
  in a fairly small region of the universe.

  And Einstein and Noerther have shown that what precision there is 
  in "understanding"  is quite impossible to *translate*,
  unless QM mirco-biologists somehow do it 
  *Very* Quickly, as on Planck time-scales.

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