ISF Logo   IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Science, Mathematics, Medicine, and Technology
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Reply
Old 18th June 2020, 07:49 AM   #1
Lukas1986
Critical Thinker
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 294
New type of brain state

Quote:
The findings arose as part of a larger research project into Huntington's disease, a condition that stops the brain working properly. The team want to understand why human patients respond differently to various drugs if they carry the gene for this disease. Sheep were used because they are recognised as a suitable pre-clinical model of disorders of the human nervous system, including Huntington's disease.

Six of the sheep were given a single higher dose of ketamine, 24mg/kg. This is at the high end of the anaesthetic range. Initially, the same response was seen as with a lower dose. But within two minutes of administering the drug, the brain activity of five of these six sheep stopped completely, one of them for several minutes -- a phenomenon that has never been seen before.

"This wasn't just reduced brain activity. After the high dose of ketamine the brains of these sheep completely stopped. We've never seen that before," said Morton. Although the anaesthetised sheep looked as though they were asleep, their brains had switched off. "A few minutes later their brains were functioning normally again -- it was as though they had just been switched off and on."

The researchers think that this pause in brain activity may correspond to what ketamine abusers describe as the 'K-hole' -- a state of oblivion likened to a near-death experience, which is followed by a feeling of great serenity. The study is published today in the journal Scientific Reports.

Taken from: https://www.sciencedaily.com/release...0611094127.htm

It seems Ketamine can produce a flat EEG when the subject is alive. Also here:

Quote:
Most strikingly, when the animals were given high doses at one stage of the experiment, electroencephalography (EEG) readings of their cortical activity appeared to show brain activity turning off completely, in an instant.
Taken from: https://www.sciencealert.com/ketamin...er-seen-before
Lukas1986 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th June 2020, 09:00 AM   #2
theprestige
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 45,184
Quote:
electroencephalography (EEG) readings of their cortical activity appeared to show brain activity turning off completely, in an instant.
Interesting.

Reading science reports written for a lay audience is always a little frustrating, though. Extremist and absolutist language is a bit of a warning sign for me.

I wonder how an actual neuroscientist would describe the EEG data in factual, scientific terms. I wonder what the actual EEG data is.
theprestige is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th June 2020, 09:37 AM   #3
Lukas1986
Critical Thinker
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 294
In the science alert article are pictures of the EEG and it shows for a while that it is flat which is quite interesting in the perspective that it was always claimed mostly in the NDE circles that a flat EEG equals dead. This challenges these claims because the brain was not dead at a long shot only drugged.

Last edited by Lukas1986; 18th June 2020 at 09:39 AM.
Lukas1986 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th June 2020, 12:11 PM   #4
casebro
Penultimate Amazing
 
casebro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 18,030
Quote:
The researchers think that this pause in brain activity may correspond to what ketamine abusers describe as the 'K-hole' -- a state of oblivion likened to a near-death experience, which is followed by a feeling of great serenity.
Reminds me of hypnosis, or getting knocked out. Which might be the same thing- you might be blacking out (hypnosis?) before the baseball hits you so hard it breaks the batting helmet. Or before the motorcycle crash. Then when you come to, after the dust has cleared, you feel very comfortable, rested.
__________________
Any sufficiently advanced idea is indistinguishable from idiocy to those who don't actually understanding the concept.
casebro is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th June 2020, 12:14 PM   #5
casebro
Penultimate Amazing
 
casebro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 18,030
What is the two-word anesthetic cocktail? F/V words? It's like a light switch. Just BOINK, you are out. Then POP you are back.
__________________
Any sufficiently advanced idea is indistinguishable from idiocy to those who don't actually understanding the concept.
casebro is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th June 2020, 12:43 PM   #6
William Parcher
Suspended
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 25,461
Originally Posted by casebro View Post
What is the two-word anesthetic cocktail?
Police-Baton.
William Parcher is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th June 2020, 03:05 PM   #7
Elaedith
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,211
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Interesting.

Reading science reports written for a lay audience is always a little frustrating, though. Extremist and absolutist language is a bit of a warning sign for me.

I wonder how an actual neuroscientist would describe the EEG data in factual, scientific terms. I wonder what the actual EEG data is.
There is open access to the original article.
Elaedith is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th June 2020, 03:35 PM   #8
gerdbonk
Penultimate Amazing
 
gerdbonk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles de Porciúncula
Posts: 19,917
Quote:
"A few minutes later their brains were functioning normally again -- it was as though they had just been switched off and on."
__________________
I'll bet you didn't notice that I was Totally ExoneratedTM when I wrote this.

Disavow any knowledge of my twitter here.
gerdbonk is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th June 2020, 03:49 PM   #9
William Parcher
Suspended
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 25,461
Ketamine is a drug, and like any drug user the human brain has to take a little break.
William Parcher is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 19th June 2020, 07:37 AM   #10
casebro
Penultimate Amazing
 
casebro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 18,030
Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
Police-Baton.
Politics everywhere.

Fentanyl & Versed.
__________________
Any sufficiently advanced idea is indistinguishable from idiocy to those who don't actually understanding the concept.
casebro is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th June 2020, 03:03 AM   #11
dann
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 11,403
Are there any indications that the sheep feel more serene?
__________________
/dann
"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
dann is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 22nd June 2020, 08:50 AM   #12
Squeegee Beckenheim
Penultimate Amazing
 
Squeegee Beckenheim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 28,964
I think the main takeaway is that it's wrong to say that brain activity stopped totally. It would be right to say that it dropped below the detection threshold for the EEG. That's a very different statement.

It's also worth noting that if you look at the actual paper, then the one instance for which data exists shows that the heart slowed, but did not stop. If there were truly no brain activity you'd expect there to be no heartbeat, absent outside stimulation.
__________________
I don't trust atoms. They make up everything.
Squeegee Beckenheim is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 22nd June 2020, 02:12 PM   #13
William Parcher
Suspended
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 25,461
Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
If there were truly no brain activity you'd expect there to be no heartbeat, absent outside stimulation.
I thought that the heart continues to beat after a decapitation. I thought this is the story behind chopping a chicken's head off and letting the heart pump out the blood.

That's not low brain activity. That's no brain at all.
William Parcher is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 23rd June 2020, 04:02 AM   #14
Cheetah
Master Poster
 
Cheetah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: South Africa
Posts: 2,687
Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
I think the main takeaway is that it's wrong to say that brain activity stopped totally. It would be right to say that it dropped below the detection threshold for the EEG. That's a very different statement.

It's also worth noting that if you look at the actual paper, then the one instance for which data exists shows that the heart slowed, but did not stop. If there were truly no brain activity you'd expect there to be no heartbeat, absent outside stimulation.
A heart doesn’t need a brain or even a body to beat, it has it’s own internal pacemaker.
__________________
"... when you dig my grave, could you make it shallow so that I can feel the rain" - DMB
Cheetah is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 23rd June 2020, 08:36 AM   #15
Lukas1986
Critical Thinker
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 294
Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
I think the main takeaway is that it's wrong to say that brain activity stopped totally. It would be right to say that it dropped below the detection threshold for the EEG. That's a very different statement.

It's also worth noting that if you look at the actual paper, then the one instance for which data exists shows that the heart slowed, but did not stop. If there were truly no brain activity you'd expect there to be no heartbeat, absent outside stimulation.
Even if that is the case for that paper it still destroys the argument that a flat EEG equals death and therefore NDE are a proof of a afterlife.

I would also like to know if there are more papers that show that EEG cannot detect deeper brain activity. So far I have found only one or two papers besides this one dealing with this problem. If there is more I would be thrilled to read them if someone knows.
Lukas1986 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 23rd June 2020, 10:42 AM   #16
Elaedith
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,211
Originally Posted by Lukas1986 View Post
Even if that is the case for that paper it still destroys the argument that a flat EEG equals death and therefore NDE are a proof of a afterlife.

I would also like to know if there are more papers that show that EEG cannot detect deeper brain activity. So far I have found only one or two papers besides this one dealing with this problem. If there is more I would be thrilled to read them if someone knows.

EEG specifically measures cortical rather than deeper brain activity, although it can detect sub-cortical activity. Absence of cortical activity usually indicates irreversible coma, however, there can still be sub-cortical activity occurring in the presence of a flat EEG.
Elaedith is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 25th June 2020, 10:24 AM   #17
Lukas1986
Critical Thinker
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 294
Originally Posted by Elaedith View Post
EEG specifically measures cortical rather than deeper brain activity, although it can detect sub-cortical activity. Absence of cortical activity usually indicates irreversible coma, however, there can still be sub-cortical activity occurring in the presence of a flat EEG.
Thanks for the article but I already read that before. I mentioned that I found two more articles that EEG cannot detect deeper brain activity or that it is flawed. The second one is this:

https://www.newsbreak.com/news/0NfHo...ck-being-awake

If there is more about this it would be great but I could only find the one you posted and the second one I am posting. Thanks anyhow for the links.
Lukas1986 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Science, Mathematics, Medicine, and Technology

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:13 AM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.