|THE DIRECTION OF TIME|
When all this comes to existence, the world has just begun.
The brain consists of cells called neurons, that are connected by axons, a wire-like projection from the cell body. One would expect the connection between two neurons to consist of an axon starting from one neuron and ending at the other, but this is not how it works. First of all, there is only one axon, one possibility for the cell to send a message to the outside world. That axon branches and branches and in doing so forms an arbor-like object. The axon usually branches further away from the cell body. Each neuron has on its surface a lot of dendrites, also arbor-like projections from the cell body. Dendrites usually branch near the cell body and do not extend further away. The dendrites receive messages. An axon branch end “clicks on” to a spot somewhere in a dendrite by means of the synaptic cleft, a thing we don’t go into any further here. So instead of wire connections directly, neurons connect by clicking axon arbor branch ends onto branch spots in dendrite arbors. Connection of arbor on arbor, as to speak. Direct links are the exception. The branch ends of a single axon can connect to (the dendrites of) many different neurons. A single dendrite can have the axons ends of many different neurons.
Within 100 up to 200 years millions of nanorobots will travel through the bloodstream to the human brain. They travel in adapted cells or otherwise come to agreement with the immune system. Their target is a chosen part of the brain. Arrived at the destination the nanorobots leave their transport cell and enter a neuron, until every neuron of the chosen brain part contains one nanorobot. Each cell then measures its precise location, by a kind of nano-gps, and send this to the computer outside.
Maybe the robot consists, amongst other parts, of a grid that spreads itself out over the inner wall of the cell. Or maybe it looks like a squid, or spider, a central spherical core and long flexible arms reaching out from it, spreading out over the inner wall of the cell. The nanorobot seeks the places where the axon and all the dendrites grow out from the cell body and puts a thin flexible arm or something like that into it. The arm is able to let the axon fire and in a dendrite it measures the incoming signals.
Next the robots in different cells make contact with each other. One nanorobot in a cell (neuron A) makes the axon to fire. The signal propagates through the axon, splits at each branch and finally reaches dendrite arbors of e.g. seven other cells. There the signal passes the synaptic cleft and goes through the (usually short) dendrite. Finally it reaches the cell body and the nanorobot in it. The seven nanorobots in the seven different cells notice the signal’s arrival and send this to the computer outside the human body. The computer concludes that apparently there is a connection between neuron A and the seven other cells. One after the other all nanorobots execute this procedure. Over time a map (map 1) is created of the precise neural network of the investigated brain part, all cell locations and all connections between them. The person in which all this is happening might die some day, but the map of the brain part will remain.
It is a healthy brain part, we know that, the person wherein this is happening, is chosen for that. Elsewhere is another person with this particular brain part being wrong, e.g. damaged by hemorrhage beyond repair. Nanorobots let the cells of the damaged brain part die and drain off the dead cells. Somewhere else in the patient growth of stem cells is initiated that have to mature to new brain cells. As soon as a new cell is formed, one nanorobot enters it. They let the new stem cells migrate to the died-off and drained-away brain part. We want the cells without the axon and dendrites during transport, so the maturing from stem cells has to wait until the cells have arrived at destination. This goes on until at destination an overgrowth of stem cells is achieved.
As soon as the cells are at location, the connections start to be made. First each cell is incited to develop as much as possible dendrites, so each cell can receive signals. From map 1 the computer knows which connections this cell have to make with which other cells and which connections not. Then the nanorobot incite the cell it is in to develop the axon. That axon must be seduced to grow and branch towards the desired specific cells and not to other cells. How would they do that?
Maybe the target cells that are nearby can be incited by their nanorobots to release a chemical attractant that makes the mentioned axon to branch and grow towards that cells. To avoid intermixing of neighboring target cell attractants, leading to a lot of unwanted connections and a lot of missing connections that are wanted, maybe different types of attractants can be used for (all too) neighboring cells. However, for target cells further away this will not do. I see no other way than that a nanorobot outside the cell releases the chemical attractant just in front of a developing axon branch and guide it towards the far away target cell. All this is very laborious and maybe is a still insecure method too. A better procedure is offered in Open end axons.
These days is assumed in schizophrenia that not only some places in the brain structure went wrong, but also that quit a number of genes are doing all kinds of things wrong. It first has to be found out what precisely is schizophrenia at cell level. Let’s suppose that, in order to cure schizophrenia, it turns out to be useful to replace a brain part in the patient by a healthy brain part structure. Then the brain part copying process can start as described, but just before the multiplication of stem cells is initiated that have to mature to the cells of the new brain part, the nanorobots first enter one (or some more) of those stem cells, one nanorobot per cell, and head for the nucleus. No spreading out over the cell’s inner surface yet. They penetrate the nucleus with their long thin arms and intrude the DNA. One by one they manually replace wrong pieces of DNA by right pieces, handed by nanorobots outside the cell that reach inside with an arm, until finally a proper functioning brain cell has been made - brain cell or stem cell, we have to see what works the best. Where necessary they synthesize DNA on the spot. These new cells then are replicated and, if it were stem cells, starts to mature. The new brain part will be made of healthy cells. When the repaired cells are stem cells they eventually might be created somewhere else and migrate through the blood vessels to their destination. When the repaired cells are mature brain cells already, then the cells have to replicate before the axon and dendrite development. (Somehow I guess the arbors cannot be duplicated in normal cell division and it may be the arbors that are the main reason why brain cells do not mutiply.) The brain part copying procedure can further perform as described. Then the schizophrenia should be cured.
The new brain part, when it has grown in and all connections with other brain parts, organs etc. are made, will start to adapt to the old brain parts and vice versa. Using connections will strengthen them while prolonged blocking of the signal will make the connection to disappear. This is a natural process called use it or lose it. Or maybe the adaption can be guided more or less. You, or others around you, might experience your brain slowly changing over time until this natural adaption has been completed, which may take days, weeks, months or years.
The copying of brain parts seems a routinely process, to be carried out by a computer. One doesn’t have to understand the brain part one wants to copy, one just copies its structure. The only demand is that the brain part is localizable. One must be able to decide which cells belong to the wanted part and which cells do not.
The process so far assumes that the precise location of axon vertices and the location of the spots in dendrites, where precisely the synaptic cleft is, plays no role. This assumption might be wrong, maybe especially in the memory. We will have to wait until we see.
I guess in a lot of cases it will not be necessary to copy a whole brain part. It will be sufficient to adjust brain properties, like number of axons, emitted amount of neurotransmitter, genes methylizing, and so on. The nanorobots have a lot to do and a lot to learn how.
When you’re done with your own brain and like to have a new one for a while, it is just possible. Whatever damage you do to your brain, when you carefully mapped its original structure you will be able to restore your old natural state, if you choose so.
The copying process itself is not creative. But if creativity is in a brain part and if you copy that brain part, you will still have copied creativity. We will see.
A previous attempt
For quite a number of years I didn’t know each neuron has only one axon. I thought each connection between two neurons always exists of an axon going from one cell body directly to the other. A cell body would have as many axons as there are connections. Then it would have been sufficient to let mature an innumerable amount of stem cells and let them make connections as much as possible, until the new brain part has (as much as possible) each neuron connected with every other neuron via two axons, one forth, one back. Then I thought to strengthen a desired neuron connection by prolonged firing sufficiently long incited by the nanorobot in the appropriate cell body. While unwanted connections would be blocked by the same nanorobot and so would disappear over time. I was sure it would work. I did’t knew about dendrite arbors and that there is only one axon that branches away from the cell body.
When taking into account the arbors, if the axon is fired sufficiently long by the nanorobot in the cell, not only the wanted connections are strengthened but also all the unwanted connections that the axon arbor makes. If one seeks to adjust this by blocking the connection from the other side, blocking the appropriate dendrite by the nanorobot in the cell with which the unwanted connection exists, then not only the unwanted connections are blocked but eventually also a number of wanted connections that ends in the same arbor of the blocked dendrite. So one actually has to go outside the cell and guide the arbors. This is so much extra work that I guess it cannot be achieved by us at the moment when for the first time nanorobots enter a cell body without disturbing the functioning of its content. The brain part copying process cannot take off immediately. So there first will be a time of research. Only later, when the open end axons are at ones disposal, which more or less might be at the same time that nanorobots can simulate the cell they are in, all those illnesses will actual be cured, if not prevented from occurrence. Then there is no opportunity no more to study them in real life.
1) Does one (partially) think with its DNA? How much of the brain’s mind activity happens IN the cell body of the neuron (but outside the nucleus)?
2) Are all brain functions well separated in brain parts?
3) If a brain part is altered just a little bit, e.g. at some location the number of existing neurons is enlarged, do the cell nuclei notice this and take measures and restore old condition?
4) How long will the brain part copying process take? And how does the subsequent adaption process will evolve in detail in the course of time?
How to fabricate a nanorobot
First I thought, they can make nanorobots in the way computer chips are made. But one needs flexible robots that can do things, not only rigid chips. Maybe printing will come to the rescue, printing nanorobot parts atom by atom. Will the nanorobot be made of carbon structures like buckyballs, will the grid be made of graphene?
Energy supply. For the nanorobots, carrying a battery along seems no option: just to massive. There is plenty of energy in the body, one only has to find out how to use it. Is such a robot able to send a signal to a computer outside, or will it use a relais-nanorobot nearby that amplifies the signal and then sends it to the computer?
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