Neuromolecular computing: a new approach to human brain evolution
Abbreviated Journal Title
LIPID-PROTEIN INTERACTIONS; SENSITIVE ION CHANNELS; LIMBIC STRUCTURES; CELL-SURFACE; MEMBRANES; COMPUTATION; ORGANIZATION; BILAYER; SINGLE; INTEGRATION; Computer Science, Cybernetics; Neurosciences
Evolutionary approaches in human cognitive neurobiology traditionally emphasize macroscopic structures. It may soon be possible to supplement these studies with models of human information-processing of the molecular level. Thin-film, simulation, fluorescence microscopy, and high-resolution X-ray crystallographic studies provide evidence for transiently organized neural membrane molecular systems with possible computational properties. This review article examines evidence for hydrophobic-mismatch molecular interactions within phospholipid microdomains of a neural membrane bilayer. It is proposed that these interactions are a massively parallel algorithm which can rapidly compute near-optimal solutions to complex cognitive and physiological problems. Coupling of microdomain activity to permenant ion movements at ligand-gated and voltage-gated channels permits the conversion of molecular computations into neuron frequency codes. Evidence for microdomain transport of proteins to specific locations within the bilayer suggests that neuromolecular computation may be under some genetic control and thus modifiable by natural selection. A possible experimental approach for examining evolutionary changes in neuromolecular computation is briefly discussed.
"Neuromolecular computing: a new approach to human brain evolution" (1999). Faculty Bibliography 1990s. 2879.