An extension to vonNeumann's analysis of quantum theory suggests self-measurement is a
fundamental process of Nature. By mapping the quantum computer to the brain architecture we will argue
that the cognitive experience results from a measurement of a quantum memory maintained by biological
entities. The insight provided by this mapping suggests quantum effects are not restricted to small atomic
and nuclear phenomena but are an integral part of our own cognitive experience and further that the
architecture of a quantum computer system parallels that of a conscious brain.
We will then review the suggestions for biological quantum elements in basic neural structures
and address the de-coherence objection by arguing for a self- measurement event model of Nature. We will
argue that to first order approximation the universe is composed of isolated self-measurement events which
guaranties coherence. Controlled de-coherence is treated as the input/output interactions between quantum
elements of a quantum computer and the quantum memory maintained by biological entities cognizant of
the quantum calculation results.
Lastly we will present stem-cell based neuron experiments conducted by one of us with the aim of
demonstrating the occurrence of quantum effects in living neural networks and discuss future research
projects intended to reach this objective.
In recent times the interest for quantum models of brain activity has rapidly grown. The Penrose-Hameroff model assumes that microtubules inside neurons are responsible for quantum computation inside brain. Several experiments seem to indicate that EPR-like correlations are possible at the biological level.
In the past year , a very intensive experimental work about this subject has been done at DiBit Labs in Milan, Italy by our research group.
Our experimental set-up is made by two separated and completely shielded basins where two parts of a common human DNA neuronal culture are monitored by EEG.
Our main experimental result is that, under stimulation of one culture by means of a 630 nm laser beam at 300 ms, the cross-correlation between the two cultures grows up at maximum levels.
Despite at this level of understanding it is impossible to tell if the origin of this non-locality is a genuine quantum effect, our experimental data seem to strongly suggest that biological systems present non-local properties not explainable by classical models.