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New research shows our brains use quantum computing

computer brain

Credit: CC0 Public Domain

Scientists from Trinity College Dublin believe that our brains can use quantum computing. Their discovery came after they adapted an idea developed to prove the existence of quantum gravity to explore the human brain and its functioning.

Measured brain functions were also associated with short-term memory performance and mindfulness, suggesting that quantum processes are part of cognitive and conscious brain functions.

If the team’s results can be validated (possibly requiring advanced multidisciplinary approaches), they will improve our overall understanding of how the brain works and potentially how it can be protected or even improved. They can also help find innovative technologies and create even more advanced quantum computers.

Chief physicist at the Trinity College Neuroscience Institute (TCIN), Dr. Christian Kerskens is the co-author of the research paper currently published in the journal. Journal of Physics Communication. “We adapted an idea developed for experiments to prove the existence of quantum gravity, so you get known quantum systems interacting with an unknown system. If the known systems get mixed up, then the unknown must also be a quantum system. – Finding measuring devices for something we know nothing about.” removes the difficulties.

“We used the proton spins of ‘brain water’ as the familiar system for our experiments. ‘Brain water’ occurs naturally as fluid in our brains and proton spins can be measured using MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging). With special MRI design to look for entangled spins, MRI resembling heartbeat evoked potentials. “We found the signals, a form of EEG signal. EEGs measure electrical brain currents that some people might recognize from personal experience or simply by watching hospital dramas on TV.”

Electrophysiological potentials, such as heartbeat evoked potentials, are not normally detectable with MRI, and scientists believe they can only observe them because nuclear proton spins in the brain are circulating.

Dr. “If the only possible explanation here is entanglement, then that would mean that brain processes must have interacted with nuclear spins and mediated the entanglement between nuclear spins,” Kerskens said.

“Since these brain functions are also associated with short-term memory performance and mindfulness, it is likely that these quantum processes are an important part of our cognitive and conscious brain functions.

“Quantum brain processes may explain why we can still outperform supercomputers when it comes to unpredictable situations, decision making, or learning something new. Our experiments, performed just 50 meters from the amphitheatre, where Schrödinger presented his famous thoughts on life, could change things to some of the mysteries of biology. and sheds light on consciousness that is even more difficult to grasp scientifically.”

Getting more entanglement: Milestones on the road to useful quantum technologies

More information:
Christian Matthias Kerskens et al., Experimental indicators of non-classical brain function, Journal of Physics Communication (2022). DOI: 10.1088/2399-6528/ac94be

Provided by Trinity College Dublin

Quotation: New research shows our brains use quantum computing (October 2022, 19).

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