Forma, Vol. 19 (No. 1), pp. 39-54, 2004

Some Physical Questions Concerning Signal Generation in Neurons

Ryuji Takaki

Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Koganei, Tokyo 184-8588, Japan
E-mail address:

(Received February 1, 2004; Accepted March 15, 2004)

Keywords: Signal Generation, Open System, Irreversibility, Classical Mechanics, Quantum Mechanics

Abstract. Some problems related to signal generation at electrically charged membranes of neuron as seen from the view of fundamental physics are discussed. After a short introduction to processes taking place at the synapse, the time reversibility of classical mechanics and quantum mechanics are explained. Some basic ideas for deriving irreversibility from reversible mechanics are introduced, and some typical irreversible processes are illustrated by the use of the master equation. Finally, some speculations are given as to how phenomena in neural systems should be understood based on basic physics.

[Full text] (PDF 516 KB)