How molecules matter to mental computation

Philosophy of Science 69 (3):497-518 (2002)
Authors
Paul Thagard
University of Waterloo
Abstract
Almost all computational models of the mind and brain ignore details about neurotransmitters, hormones, and other molecules. The neglect of neurochemistry in cognitive science would be appropriate if the computational properties of brains relevant to explaining mental functioning were in fact electrical rather than chemical. But there is considerable evidence that chemical complexity really does matter to brain computation, including the role of proteins in intracellular computation, the operations of synapses and neurotransmitters, and the effects of neuromodulators such as hormones. Neurochemical computation has implications for understanding emotions, cognition, and artificial intelligence
Keywords Cognitive Science  Computation  Mind  Molecule  Neuroscience  Science
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DOI 10.1086/342452
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