Cell Intelligence in Physiological and Morphological Spaces | Michael Levin

Those seem downright sensationalistic claims that feel to me a bit like a snow job. Especially in light of these fascinating articles that get into amazing detail, yet I never find them echoing your theme, namely that microtubules are somehow the answer to everything.

If I’m missing it, which I certainly could be, I don’t pretend anything beyond a casual awareness of the state of the science.

Stuff like that link you shared above certainly doesn’t get within light years of your claim. Now the following might, I skimmed and didn’t catch anything beyond hints to bigger things, you might do better.

How do they do that?

Remember, every mention of the term “neuron” means microtubules. Every mention of cellular communication means microtubules. Every mention of
sensory processes include microtubules . Every mention of thought includes microtubules.

Every form of data processing that is not purely chemical is perfomed by microtubules.

AFAIK, there is no Eukaryotic biological cell on earth that does not rely on microtubules for processing “information”

Why does that sound like a snow job to you? There is nothing else that comes even close to the functions MT perform .

Their self-organization has remained the same since the beginining of evolution.
When there is a genetic mutation it is the microtubules that faithfully copy the change into its offspring via mitosis.

Microtubules are the Swiss Army Knives of living organisms.

Martin and Koonin (31) have recently hypothesized that the nuclear membrane evolved to separate unspliced transcripts from ribosomes; nevertheless, a protoeukaryotic cell could not have evolved a nucleus without concurrently evolving a new machinery of chromosome segregation: the microtubule-based mitotic spindle (32).

Long-distance microtubule-based transport would have evolved through a series of progressive changes to become the principal transport mechanism for chromosome segregation. It is probable that microtubules were selected in the protoeukaryotic cell because the microtubule lattice provided a much larger contact surface for the initial centromere/kinetochore capture.

The discovery of the bacterial ancestors of tubulin and actin, FtsZ and MreB, has revealed the prokaryotic origin of the cytoskeleton (33). Recent studies have shown that, whereas eukaryotes use microtubules for chromosome segregation, prokaryotes seem to use helical filaments made of actin-like proteins for the same purpose (34, [35]

However, in eukaryotes, it is becoming apparent that there is cooperation between the actin- and tubulin-based cytoskeletons at several cell division stages. For instance, the spindle microtubules are required to promote the reorganization of actin filaments into the cleavage furrow during cytokinesis (36), and actin filaments are required to deliver chromosomes to the microtubule spindle during chromosome congression (37, 38).

Okay, microtubules (apparently there’s a wide variety of MT) are ubiquitous.

I’m not disputing microtubules, just pointing out that when I look up serious papers on the topic by experts, none of them show your excited enthusiasm and overarching claims. Sure you got Penrose, Hameroff and that club, but it seems they sound like the string theorist situation, evidence and hints and convictions.

I guess what makes me most uncomfortable is, for one, you place microtubules on some Superstar pedestal to the deliberate exclusion of the rest of the components within a living cell or being.

It’s also your general longing for answers to everything and some ultimate truth, that loses me. You get mad when I mention the self-absorbed nature of humanity, yet you do such a splendid demonstration of that. I’m a little more into my day to day and the things that actually relate to that.

[quote=“citizenschallengev4, post:23, topic:10077”]
I guess what makes me most uncomfortable is, for one, you place microtubules on some Superstar pedestal to the deliberate exclusion of the rest of the components within a living cell or being.

Exclusion of what components? Name me one “component” that stands in competition with MT in potential ability for being the substrate to emergent conscousness.

It’s also your general longing for answers to everything and some ultimate truth, that loses me. You get mad when I mention the self-absorbed nature of humanity, yet you do such a splendid demonstration of that. I’m a little more into my day to day and the things that actually relate to that.

I consider it the most important question ever posed by the human mind.
3000 years of religions are based on a universal “sentient creator agency” i.e. God.

I like answers to the big questions, that won’t change my life, but afford “understanding”.

I totally respect your focus on the conditions that directly affect our lives, such as GW. I follow your posts with deep interest because ultimately it all relates to itself.

This is why I really like Roger Antonsen’s posit that the more you know about a things from different perspectives, the more understanding emerges, and in one way that is very much related to my quest.

Lest we forget, there are plenty of climate deniers that make a profit by treating the earth as a big waste disposal dump.

It not about one component being in competition with the other, it’s that very framing that drives me to distractions.
It’s more matter of one hand washing the other, rather than King of the Hill.

Yeah and look at what a hash we’ve made of it, while most don’t even notice.

I don’t disagree with that. That’s why I do more self-critical examination than most, and why I’m willingness to follow challenging claims and strands of evidence.

But the way you’ve been approaching it feels more like your focus on MT blind you to other factors that are part of the biology. Also I notice how you keep coming up with more arguments, rather than showing me scientific citations that support your claim. I shared three articles, one I thought you’d jump on because it seems, to me, to foreshadow your claims. But you don’t, instead you keep toss philosophy based arguments at me. That’s no educational, or constructive.

And what does that have to do with what you’re trying to get across?
Those deniers aren’t denying out of good faith differences of opinion - they are strategically and tactically twisting truths into emotion tugging nonsense, for fun, power, and profit.

[quote=“citizenschallengev4, post:25, topic:10077”]
It’s more matter of one hand washing the other, rather than King of the Hill.
[/quote] I realize that there is much more to consciousness than a neural network. But just a car has many parts it’s the computer that controls and regulates the processing of the fuel. And so it is with the neural network and the brain in particular. You keep reducing my scope to 1 microtubule at a time, but I am talking about trillions of microtubules, in every nook and cranny of your body.

I agree, but that was because we were looking for a single extra ingredient (outside conscious Agency) , whereas we already have everything we need for an emergent native consciousness, as can be traced back to single cell organisms and gradually evolving into more complexity until the advent of the human brain.
But note that at every step of greater complexity the main player is the neural network and the evolving ever more complex data processing functions microtubules are asked to perform.

The arguments are supported with actual papers and rather than distracting, these different function support the concept of the extraordinary abilities and potentials that are contained in this nanoscale dynamic dipolar coil when organized in a massive intra-cellular and inter-cellular communication network.

Yes I have been following Mark Levin’s work for some time. Seems to despise Joe Biden very very much

Maybe you should take a couple moments to figure out what the conversation is about before jumping in.
I mean even a metal head ought to have enough intelligence to appreciate that more than one person can have the same name, especially one like Mark Levin. And that perhaps an esteemed serious scientist - isn’t the same half-wit clown puking out biased nonsense on the FOX Extremist Propaganda Network.

Oh and you even follow him and don’t know the difference, that’s sad.

1 Like

Ran across this excellent article describing plant “awareness” and ability to “solve existential problems”.

The secret life of plants: how they memorise, communicate, problem solve and socialise

Before Mancuso’s lab started work in 2005, plant neurobiology was largely seen as a laughable concept. “We were interested in problems that were, until that moment, just related to animals, like intelligence and even behaviour,” he says. At the time, it was “almost forbidden” to talk about behaviour in plants. But “we study how plants are able to solve problems, how they memorise, how they communicate, how they have their social life and things like that”.

Flower power … Mancuso’s team has shown that Mimosa pudica can retain learned information for weeks. Photograph: Alamy

Mancuso and his colleagues have become experts in training plants, just like neuroscientists train lab rats. If you let a drop of water fall on a Mimosa pudica, its kneejerk response is to recoil its leaves, but, if you continue doing so, the plant will quickly cotton on that the water is harmless and stop reacting. The plants can hold on to this knowledge for weeks, even when their living conditions, such as lighting, are changed. “That was unexpected because we were thinking about very short memories, in the range of one or two days – the average memory of insects,” says Mancuso. “To find that plants were able to memorise for two months was a surprise.” Not least because they don’t have brains.
In a plant, a single brain would be a fatal flaw because they have evolved to be lunch. “Plants use a very different strategy,” says Mancuso. “They are very good at diffusing the same function all over the body.” You can remove 90% of a plant without killing it. “You need to imagine a plant as a huge brain. Maybe not as efficient as in the case of animals, but diffused everywhere.”

One of the most controversial aspects of Mancuso’s work is the idea of plant consciousness. As we learn more about animal and plant intelligence, not to mention human intelligence, the always-contentious term consciousness has become the subject of ever more heated scientific and philosophical debate.“Let’s use another term,” Mancuso suggests. “Consciousness is a little bit tricky in both our languages. Let’s talk about awareness. Plants are perfectly aware of themselves.” A simple example is when one plant overshadows another – the shaded plant will grow faster to reach the light. But when you look into the crown of a tree, all the shoots are heavily shaded. They do not grow fast because they know that they are shaded by part of themselves. “So they have a perfect image of themselves and of the outside,” says Mancuso.

Far from being silent and passive, plants are social and communicative, above ground and beneath, through their roots and fungal networks.


Plants respond to sound, too, “feeling” vibrations all over.
“Plants are extremely good at detecting specific kinds of sounds, for example at 200hz or 300hz … because they are seeking the sound of running water.” If you put a source of 200hz sound close to the roots of a plant, he says, they will follow it. There is no evidence that the human voice benefits plants, although talking to plants may soothe the humans doing it.
They are adept at detecting subtle electromagnetic fields generated by other life forms. They use chemicals and scents to warn each other of danger, deter predators and attract pollinating insects.
When corn is nibbled by caterpillars, for example, the plant emits a chemical distress signal that lures parasitic wasps to exterminate the caterpillars.

more … https://www.theguardian.com/environ...able-cousins-more-intelligent-than-we-realise

Motion allowed for hunting and grazing. No joke!

Many single-celled prokaryotes like bacteria and single-celled eukaryotes like the Paramecium developed a propeller system, i.e. flagella and cilia.

Paramecium or paramecia are single-celled protists that are naturally found in aquatic habitats. They are typically oblong or slipper-shaped and are covered with short hairy structures called cilia. Certain paramecia are also easily cultured in labs and serve as useful model organisms (a non-human species used to understand biological processes).

The single-celled slime mold developed pseudopodiai.e. walking.

and many amoebas.

A pseudopod or pseudopodium (pl: pseudopods or pseudopodia ) is a temporary arm-like projection of a eukaryotic cell membrane that is emerged in the direction of movement. Filled with cytoplasm, pseudopodia primarily consist of actin filaments and may also contain microtubules and intermediate filaments.[1][2] Pseudopods are used for motility and ingestion. They are often found in amoebas.

The interesting part is that all modes of propulsion are facilitated by microtubules which are present in ALL eukaryotic organisms.

Something in between those. Why are males stronger in humans? They are hunters because they are stronger. Horse before cart

I beg to differ. This is definitively not true of insects. I just showed examples of female dominated species.

Women are the child bearing reproducers, which places a demand on the male to hunt. Evolutionary selection did the rest.

In humans, after mating the male is usually available for the hunt, whereas the female is completely burdened with the offspring.

That’s my point. There have to be other reasons.

Female lions do the hunting

I think it’s fair to say that dependent on the environment, natural selection eventually selects for ability to survive by all possible means.

But it never starts with a pre-existing irreducible complexity. All abilities in all species are a result of evolution and natural selection over time.

Ah yes, but all lions are apex predators to begin with and I would bet that whereas the male is stronger, the female lion is more agile and is more durable in any extended chase,

I’ve lost the thread of your argument again. I said males being stronger isn’t BECAUSE they are hunters. I don’t think we know where in the evolution timeline the male became dominant

I dare say, that the emergence of mammals restricted the ability of females to hunt and forced that activity on the male.

In the non-mammalian species, the male is not necessarily dominant at all.
Interestingly , in the bee world the males becomes altogether expendable after mating and are forcibly ejected from the hive.

But we’ve already covered that females kill their mates or do the hunting in some species.

Yes, and does that not address your posit that all males are dominant?

I never posited that. No wonder this conversation is a mess