Are you aware that the bulk of current scientific knowledge has been discovered in the past ten years? And that many of the most original results have appeared in the last year? Can you imagine where we will be ten years from now? This blog is intended to be an exploration of a paradigm shift I expect to see in the scientific understanding of the connection between mind and the material world. Posts will look at scientific discoveries, as they appear, in the fields of neuroscience, animal behavior, microbiology, molecular biology, evolution and biophysics, and explore their relevance to the emerging view of mind as an integral aspect of nature.


Does Activity Determine Synaptic Creation and Pruning

B0006223 Neurons in culture

It has been assumed that use of neurons through activity (action potential spikes) stimulates more synapses and stronger circuits in the brain and that lack of use leads to pruning or elimination of the synapse. But, is this true? While it appears that activity can lead to new and increased circuits, the mechanisms for…


How Many Different Kinds of Neurons Are There

B0009505 Cell fates in zebrafish retina, acrylic painting

Many issues confront neuroscientists in their attempts to map the brain. A previous post, the Limits of Neuroscience, listed critical problems. Connections are made and pruned each day and one neuron can have 100,000 connections. There are many types of synapses, many types of neuroplasticity in wide networks, and many…


Versatile Lipoproteins in Healthy Brains and Alzheimers

N0019835 Cell membrane with different receptor types

A previous post discussed the great complexity of cell membranes and the varied lipids that are manufactured, tagged and transported for many different membranes—vesicles, signaling, and cellular compartment structures. Cholesterol is one of the key lipids with many functions. Another special molecule—a lipoprotein,…


Amazing Complexity of Cellular Membranes

N0019830 Endocytosis

When seeking the origin of cellular life, most scientists first try to create a spontaneous fatty membrane that could, theoretically, surround a cell. In fact, real cellular membranes are anything but spontaneous and simple. Membranes are made of extremely complex lipids, of which there are a vast amount of different…


The Remarkable Language of Cells

B0003526 Cells in the cerebellum

All living creatures communicate, providing group activity and defense. But, it has been surprising to find individual cells, also, have very elaborate communication. Amoebae communication is so complex that individual creatures are able to combine into what appears to be a multi cellular organism and then go back to…