Quantum Brain Dynamics

The next Naturwissenschaftscafé will take place on the 19th of December at 20:00 in Tunnel Vienna.

This time Moe will talk about Quantum Brain Dynamics and how current studies in Quantum Biology and Neuroscience deal with phenomena like “Quantum Conciousness” and quantum information processing in the brain.

The topics discussed are highly speculative and may contain some philosophic and even esoteric components. When reading into the field, I got the feeling that it is very important to stay open AND critical. I’m looking forward to an open discussion, because there seems to be no consensus in the scientific community whatsoever.

I will start with a short introduction in Neural Network Theory and how its assumptions are based on classical physics.

Then I want to give you an overview about the hypothesis that sparked the speculative discussion about “Quantum Conciousness”, which was developed by Penrose and Hameroff in the 90s.


And finally, I would like to talk about the current status of Quantum Neuroscience and which hypothesis have been killed by in-depth analysis:


and which are still alive:


For the preperation of the discussion it would be ideal to watch the first video, read the abstract of the arxiv paper and the quantamagzine article 🙂

Additional Literature:


Editing genomes with CRISPR

The next meeting will take place on the 18.10. at 19:30 at the Tunnel Vienna.
The topic this time is going to be: Editing genomes with CRISPR, between scientific breakthroughs and societal challenges

Please have a look at the literature provided:

Watch this video to have a basic understanding what CRISPR is and why it is so revolutionary for genome editing:

CRISPR “history”:

Should you edit your children’s genes?

Welcome to the CRISPR Zoo:

How CRISPR works on a molecular Level:

Attend after our discussion the “editing genomes with CRISPR, between scientific breakthroughs and societal challenges” symposium! The symposium is for free and it will take place on the 19 + 20.10.17. If you want to go there you have to register until the 13.10.17 here:


what can you experience at the symposium:
  • An open dialogue between the scientific community (ranging from life scientists, to social scientists, and beyond) and civil society, discussing ongoing applications of the CRISPR technology, expected and envisioned developments, and the benefits, caveats and consequences of this technology’s applications;
  • provide a platform for public engagement on this topic, enabling researchers involved in the CRISPR field to interact with citizens, regulators, and stakeholders;
  • raise these issues in a European context, in order to facilitate the development of a European engagement with this revolution.

What is life? Are viruses alive?

The next meeting will take place on Fr 16.6. 18:00 again in Tunnel Vienna. This times topic will be: What is life? Are viruses alive? presented by Geli and Patrick.
Please read into and watch the materials provided in order for us to have a common basis of knowledge for the discussion:

Level 1:

Watch this video explaining in brief what Viruses are and discussing differences in organization compared to things perceived as alive.

Level 2:

Read these articles discussing how newly found giant viruses might alter our previous understanding of aliveness/alivehood/alivebeing?
level 3:
Read a physicists perspective on the subject in Erwin Schroedingers book: What is life? A book that is based on a course of lectures held in 1943.

Gain-of-Function research

At our next meeting on 12.12. we will discus the topic of gain-of-function research.

Before going into the problem, I would like to remind you that my aim in presenting this topic is not to talk about details of procedures in this type of research, but rather to make it possible for you to have an ethical discussion on its justifiability.

Level 1
Read this short blog entry on GoF research giving little introduction, but focusing mainly on issues of publicizing these studies.

Read this article explaining a bit of general aspects of GoF research and also giving suggestions on how the EU should approach the issue.

Level 2
Read this summary of a workshop held in 2014 explaining background, benefits and risks in a bit more detail.

Level 3
Listen to this very long, very detailed Gain of Function Symposium held in March 2016, explaining and discussing very many details on the subject. (If you really want to listen to someone explaining the issue, I would suggest watching the session2:overview and/or the workshop summary video)

Or read the also very long transcript of days 1 and 2 of the symposium.