Can quantum effects in the brain explain consciousness?
Published in Consciousness.
New research reveals hints of quantum states in tiny proteins called microtubules inside brain cells. If the results stand up, the idea that consciousness is quantum might come in from the cold
IF IT is a controversial idea that warm, wet life might exploit quantum magic, that’s nothing compared with certain researchers’ convictions that quantum phenomena might help explain human consciousness.
Orchestrated objective reduction theory (Orch OR), originally proposed by physicist Roger Penrose and anaesthesiologist Stuart Hameroff in the 1990s, seeks to bridge the gulf between physical matter and felt experience. The idea is that consciousness arises when gravitational instabilities in the fundamental structure of space-time collapse quantum wave functions in tiny proteins called microtubules, which are found inside neurons.