SKM 2021 – wissenschaftliches Programm

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BP: Fachverband Biologische Physik

BP 4: Posters Biological Physics

BP 4.10: Poster

Donnerstag, 30. September 2021, 11:15–12:15, P

Exploring quantum features of the brain with MRI — •Christian Kerskens1 and David Lopez Perez1, 21Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland — 2Institute of Psychology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland

Recent proposals to explore quantum gravity have shown that if any physical system can mediate locally the generation of entanglement between two quantum systems, then it itself must be non-classical. Here, we adopted this idea to explore non-classicality in the human brain. Thereby, we considered an unknown brain function as the mediator which may or may not entangle the proton nuclear spins of free-diffusible bulk water. The challenge was to find a nuclear spin preparation that, together with a physiological condition, could facilitate the creation of quantum entanglement. For the spin preparation, we took the complementarity between magnetization and the likelihood of entanglement into account. As a result, we used a highly de-phased and saturated signal for our entanglement witness protocol, which was based on a hybrid multiple quantum coherence sequence. For the physiological condition, we assumed that some brain rhythms may influence the order at tissue level. Remarkably, we witnessed entanglement in the brains of our volunteers, if and only if, they were awake. Its temporal appearance showed a rhythm resembling heartbeat-evoked potentials. This link to conscious awareness underpins that the non-classical mediator may be used and manipulated in conscious-related computation, ergo we found indication that brain computation is non-classical.

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