The fundamental principle of Western medical science has been that the basis of life is biological and the combination of biochemistry and molecular biology defines living organisms. However, each cell in the body can generate and receive different forms of energy -- heat, light, sound, vibration, magnetism, and electricity11, 12, 13, 14. Historically, these different types of bioenergy phenomena have been treated as byproducts of normal cellular function instead of being recognized as intrinsic to the function.
Emerging fields of research including epigenetics, psychoneuroimmunology (see Epigenetics and Psychoneuroimmunology), biophysics, (including biophotonics and quantum biology), proteomics, biomedical imaging, bioengineering, metabolomics, and frequency therapy (see Energy Based Medical Technologies and Therapies) are proving that energy is just as fundamental to life as biology. This should come as no surprise because in 1905 Einstein published his Special Theory of Relativity demonstrating the equivalence of mass and energy (E=mc2). This fundamental equivalence confirms the fact that human beings are simulataneously biological and energetic.
What explains the coordinated function of the estimated 75-100 trillion cells and over 100,000 reactions per second in most cells in the body, day after day, and year after year? Although DNA holds instructions for creating all of the roughly 70,000 proteins in the human genome, it is still just a parts list. Proteins that are involved in metabolism and body function are created and then can be reused many times without transcription being required from DNA. When a protein wears out or is damaged and must be replaced or extra demands are placed on the body, then DNA is accessed to create information in the form of a biomolecular program to create a new copy of a protein.
Epigenetics research has demonstrated how proteins are turned on and off by environmental bioenergetic signals, such as those generated by thoughts, emotions, and the practice of Qigong (see Qigong and Gene Expression). Although epigenetics affects cellular function and modulates the expression of genes, it is only one factor in the production and regulation of metabolic enzymes. Just as computers need oscillators to regulate the rate at which computations take place, the human body also needs oscillators and signaling mechanisms to coordinate body functions and regulate metabolism over time. The heart and brain are examples of oscillators that generate measurable electromagnetic fields 11. Researchers are beginning to understand that the complexity and timing of the regulation of body function is simply beyond chemical signal processing speeds and capabilities 8.
This has not always been the case. Up until recently, the majority of biology research has been based on classical physics. But many researchers point out that the primary shortcoming of classical physics based molecular biology is that the holistic character of the physical world now recognized in quantum theory is not taken into account. For example, classical physics is inadequate for describing homeodynamics, ontogenesis, and morphology. In addition, fundamental biological processes that involve the conversion of energy into forms that are usable for chemical transformations are quantum mechanical in nature. These processes involve chemical reactions themselves, light absorption, formation of excited electronic states, transfer of excitation energy, transfer of electrons and protons, etc10. Molecular biology and biochemistry, though well grounded in empirical knowledge, have had no foundation in the principles of quantum theory1. Biophysics must be based on more than classical physics in order to be able describe energy-based phenomena within cells such as quantum coherence and oscillating electromagnetic fields. Today, the field view of the organism and its interactions is finding increasing acceptance in biology, biophysics, and medicine1. Quantum biology is an example of a new discipline which incorporates field theory and combines principles of biophysics and molecular biology based on quantum physics. It's interesting to note that some emerging sub-fields of bioenergy research are so new that their scientific descriptions are still being defined (e.g. biophotonics, quantum biology, and quantum chemistry).
Understanding the interaction between human energy and human biology is intrinsic to the scientific understanding of the basis of Qigong. At a basic level, all life depends on molecules interacting through vibrating or oscillating energy fields. Each electron, atom, chemical bond, molecule, cell, tissue, organ, strand of DNA, and the body as a whole has its own vibratory character11, 14. A growing amount of energy field-based biophysics research is confirming the energetic nature of the human body. The heart, brain, and nervous system generate electromagnetic fields11. Electromagnetic fields have been found to modulate cellular signaling molecules2. Microtubules in cells generate oscillating electromagnetic fields which are believed to have an organizing affect upon water around microtubules and a role in cytoskeleton organization, cellular interactions, and information transfer 3, 6. Bioelectric ion flows and gradients have been found to regulate cell proliferation, migration, and differentiation as well as appendage regeneration, embryogenesis, and formation of prepatterns for gene expression during craniofacial patterning4. Cancer cells have been detected by their electromagnetic signatures5, and their growth has been inhibited by specific electromagnetic frequencies7. Even the stomach generates measurable electric and magnetic fields9.
1.Bischof, M., Field Concepts and the Emergence of a Holistic Biophysics. International Institute of Biophysics, Published in: Beloussov, L.V., Popp, F.A., Voeikov, V.L., and Van Wijk, R., (eds.): Biophotonics and Coherent Systems. Moscow University Press, Moscow 2000, pp.1-25.
2. Pilla A, Fitzsimmons R, Muehsam D, Wu J, Rohde C, Casper D. Electromagnetic fields as first messenger in biological signaling: Application to calmodulin-dependent signaling in tissue repair, Biochim Biophys Acta. 2011.
3. Havelka D, Cifra M, Kucera O, Pokorny J, Vrba J., High-frequency electric field and radiation characteristics of cellular microtubule network, J Theor Biol., 2011.
4. Levin, M., Molecular bioelectricity in developmental biology: New tools and recent discoveries: Control of cell behavior and pattern formation by transmembrane potential gradients, Bioessays, 2012.
5. Pokorny, J., Vedruccio, C., Cifra, M., Kucera, O., Cancer physics: Diagnostics based on damped cellular elasto-electrical vibrations in microtubules, European Biophysics Journal, 2011.
6. Pokorny, J., Video: Microtubules - Electric Oscillating Structures in Living Cells (Google Workshop on Quantum Biology). 2010.
7. Zimmerman JW, Pennison MJ, Brezovich I, Yi N, Yang CT, Ramaker R, Absher D, Myers RM, Kuster N, Costa FP, Barbault A, Pasche B., Cancer cell proliferation is inhibited by specific modulation frequencies, Br J Cancer. 2011 Dec 1.
8. Georgiev, D., Bose-Einstein condensation of tunnelling photons in the brain cortex as a mechanism of conscious action, [Preprint], 2004.
9. Kim, et. al., Influence of body parameters on gastric bioelectric and biomagnetic fields in a realistic volume conductor, Physiol Meas. 2012 Mar 14.
10. Theoretical and Computational Biophysics Group, Quantum Biology, http://www.ks.uiuc.edu/Research/quantum_biology/.
11. Oschman, J., Energy Medicine: The Scientific Basis, Churchill Livingstone, 2000.
12. Salari, et. al., The Physical Mechanism for Retinal Discrete Dark Noise: Thermal Activation or Cellular Ultraweak Photon Emission?. PLoS One. 2016 Mar 7;11(3):e0148336. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0148336.
13. Tuszynski. The Bioelectric Circuitry of the Cell. Chapter 11 in Brain and Human Body Modeling: Computational Human Modeling at EMBC 2018 [Internet]. [PubMed]
14. Facchin, et. al. Physical energies to the rescue of damaged tissues. World J Stem Cells. 2019 June 26;11(6):297-321. [Pubmed].
Editorial: Nanotechnologies in Neuroscience and Neuroengineering. Neuroscience and Neuroengineering operate at the cellular level and their association with Nanotechnology is bringing unexpected strides. During the last decade, we have witnessed an unprecedented increase in the successful application of Nanotechnology to both basic Neuroscience and to Clinical Practice. Novel nanotechnologies are expected to bring important insights on brain mechanisms and medical care to patients.
Fashioning Cellular Rhythms with Magnetic Energy and Sound Vibration: a New Perspective for Regenerative Medicine. Compelling evidence recently shows that oscillations and synchronization of multiple oscillators is an essential requisite in living cells. This review discusses the most update and intriguing investigations demonstrating that circadian clocks exist at the subcellular and single cell level.
Natural ELF Fields in the Atmosphere and in Living Organisms. Most electrical activity in vertebrates and invertebrates occurs at extremely low frequencies (ELF), with characteristic maxima below 50 Hz. The origin of these frequency maxima is unknown and remains a mystery. We propose that over billions of years during the evolutionary history of living organisms on Earth, the natural electromagnetic resonant frequencies in the atmosphere, continuously generated by global lightning activity, provided the background electric fields for the development of cellular electrical activity. In some animals, the electrical spectrum is difficult to differentiate from the natural background atmospheric electric field produced by lightning. In this paper, we present evidence for the link between the natural ELF fields and those found in many living organisms, including humans.
According to Medical Qigong theory there is a protective energy field around the body called the wei qi ("way chee") field. This electromagnetic energy field has a number of functions including extending past the skin to offer protection against a vast array of harmful energies and pathogens. It can be considered the body's energetic immune system. Internal organs generate this field which radiates through external tissues and interacts with surrounding environmental fields. In this article neuroscience researchers describe how they figured out a way to "feel" this invisible field or bubble that wraps around each of us.
Defeating Diseases with Energy. Healing with qi. A change in body energy can have a profound effect upon function. “My belief is that mitochondrial dysfunction underlies the etiology of most common complex diseases, as well as aging,” the author says. He explains that a person suffering from chronic headaches might see a neurologist, but there’s also the possibility that “there’s a systemic energy defect causing the headache. There’s nothing wrong anatomically with the brain.” Wallace believes the same can be said for problems with the heart, muscles, renal and endocrine systems. "We've completely ignored energy in Western medical philosophy," the author says.
Daily mood and chronic caregiving stress are associated with mitochondrial functional capacity. Mitochondrial health may represent a nexus between psychological stress and health. This research suggests how stress directly affects the body's production of energy.
Role of mitochondria in carcinogenesis. Mitochondria play the central role in supplying cells with ATP and are also the major source of reactive oxygen species (ROS) - molecules of both regulatory and destructive nature. Dysfunction of mitochondrial metabolism and/or morphology have been frequently reported in human cancers.
Targeting mitochondrial biogenesis for promoting health. Ensuring proper mitochondrial function (e.g. proper nutrition) represents a compelling therapeutic strategy for dealing with metabolic, degenerative, neurodegenerative, and metastatic diseases.
Gamma Rhythms in the Brain. Brain rhythms are activity fluctuations shared in populations of neurons. They are evident in extracellular electric fields and detectable through recordings performed within the brain or on the scalp. The gamma rhythm, a relatively high frequency (30– 80 Hz) component of these fluctuations, has received a great deal of attention. Gamma is modulated by sensory input and internal processes such as working memory and attention. Numerous theories have proposed that gamma contributes directly to brain function, but others argue that gamma is better viewed as a simple byproduct of network activity. Here we provide a basic introduction to this enigmatic signal, the mechanisms that generate it, and an accompanying paper in PLoS Biology attempting to elucidate its potential function.
Brain works like a radio receiver. Initial evidence is found that the brain has a 'tuning knob' that is actually influencing behavior. Brain circuits can tune into the frequency of other brain parts relevant at the time.
How the brain filters out distracting thoughts to focus on a single bit of information. Information is carried on top of gamma waves, just like songs are carried by radio waves. These "carrier waves" transmit information from one brain region to another. The lower frequencies are used to transmit memories of past experiences, and the higher frequencies are used to convey what is happening where you are right now. The cells can rapidly switch their activity to tune in to the slow waves or the fast waves, but they cannot listen to both at the exact same time. In this way, the brain cells can distinguish between an internal world of memories and a person's current experiences.
Successful Execution of Working Memory Linked to Synchronized High-Frequency Gamma Oscillations. These findings suggest that transient high gamma synchrony contributes to the successful execution of spatial working memory. Furthermore, the data are consistent with an association between transient high gamma synchrony and explicit awareness of the working memory content.
Connectomics (Wikipedia) is the production and study of connectomes: comprehensive maps of connections within an organism's nervous system, typically its brain or eye.
Recent advances in non-invasive neuroimaging have enabled the measurement of connections between distant regions in the living human brain, thus opening up a new field of research: Human connectomics. Different imaging modalities allow the mapping of structural connections (axonal fibre tracts) as well as functional connections (correlations in time series), and individual variations in these connections may be related to individual variations in behaviour and cognition.
The Human Connectome Project. The NIH Human Connectome Project is an ambitious effort to map the neural pathways that underlie human brain function. The overarching purpose of the Project is to acquire and share data about the structural and functional connectivity of the human brain. It will greatly advance the capabilities for imaging and analyzing brain connections, resulting in improved sensitivity, resolution, and utility, thereby accelerating progress in the emerging field of human connectomics.
Levin at the Department of Biology, Tufts University is at the forefront of researching the relationship between physiology and bioenergy. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine the Eight Extraordinary vessels or meridians are the energy template of the body. This energy template or field is affected by the environment and is the fundamental pattern that provides the basis for human growth and morphology. Levin's work expands our basic understanding of morphogenetic processes responsible for the generation and repair of complex anatomy through researching and understanding our endogenous voltage gradients, ion flows, and electric fields.
Brainless Embryos Suggest Bioelectricity Guides Growth. Researchers are building a case that long before the nervous system works, the brain sends crucial bioelectric signals to guide the growth of embryonic tissues.
Bioelectric signaling in regeneration: Mechanisms of ionic controls of growth and form. The ability to control pattern formation is critical for the both the embryonic development of complex structures as well as for the regeneration/repair of damaged or missing tissues and organs. In addition to chemical gradients and gene regulatory networks, endogenous ion flows are key regulators of cell behavior. Not only do bioelectric cues provide information needed for the initial development of structures, they also enable the robust restoration of normal pattern after injury. In order to expand our basic understanding of morphogenetic processes responsible for the repair of complex anatomy, we need to identify the roles of endogenous voltage gradients, ion flows, and electric fields. In complement to the current focus on molecular genetics, decoding the information transduced by bioelectric cues enhances our knowledge of the dynamic control of growth and pattern formation.
There is no underlying theory for the relationship between bioenergy and physiology, and yet this interaction enables the function and health of every cell, organ, and tissue in the human body. Quantum biology, molecular biophysics, biophysics, bioenergetics, and biophotonics are examples of overlapping fields of research that are applying physics to biology and medicine. It is becoming increasingly evident that biophysics is necessary to describe the organization, regulation, generation, and conversion of energy into forms useable for biochemical reactions and cellular signaling. The electromagnetic fields that participate in these processes and functions constitute the bioenergetic foundation of life. Furthermore, exciting new research is revealing that there are physical representations in nature of biomolecules that require interaction with zero point energy. The discovery of micron scale leukocytes fighting Casmir forces to maintain their spherical size is just one example of the relationship of biophysics to quantum physics.
James Oschman, Ph.D. Quantum introduces Quantum Biology. Oschman is the author of Energy Medicine: The Scientific Basis
Science is increasingly looking at cell biology with the eyes of physics and electronics, providing compelling evidence that life is embedded within oscillatory patterns that create coherent rhythms, now recordable at cellular, subcellular, and even molecular levels. In addition to expressing rhythmically their molecular dynamics, cells are able to organize their decisions and fate by detecting and deploying the physical energies that permeate nature, including extremely weak mechanical vibrations (nanomotions), magnetic fields, and electromagnetic radiations (light).
Rhythmic oscillatory patterns sustain cellular dynamics, driving the concerted action of regulatory molecules, microtubules, and molecular motors. We describe cellular microtubules as oscillators capable of synchronization and swarming, generating mechanical and electric patterns that impact biomolecular recognition. We consider the biological relevance of seeing the inside of cells populated by a network of molecules that behave as bioelectronic circuits and chromophores. We discuss the novel perspectives disclosed by mechanobiology, bioelectromagnetism, and photobiomodulation, both in term of fundamental basic science and in light of the biomedical implication of using physical energies to govern (stem) cell fate. We focus on the feasibility of exploiting atomic force microscopy and hyperspectral imaging to detect signatures of nanomotions and electromagnetic radiation (light), respectively, generated by the stem cells across the specification of their multilineage repertoire. The chance is reported of using these signatures and the diffusive features of physical waves to direct specifically the differentiation program of stem cells in situ, where they already are resident in all the tissues of the human body. We discuss how this strategy may pave the way to a regenerative and precision medicine without the needs for (stem) cell or tissue transplantation. [PMC6600852]
Fröhlich formulated hypothesis of coherent electromagnetic activity in biological systems. The full featured Fröhlich's system is described by two complementary nonlinear models: the one with spectral energy channeling and energy condensation in the lowest frequency mode, the other with creation of a ferroelectric state and a potential valley for oscillation amplitudes. Electric and electromagnetic oscillations in various biological systems were found in a wide frequency range from acoustic to visible and UV bands but their internal physical mechanisms are rather unclear.
Bioelectromagnetic Healing: A Rationale for its Use. A short introduction to bioelectromagnetic medicine. This book includes chapters on History of Electromedicine, Coherent Natural and Stimulated Biophoton Emission, Effects of Electromagnetic Fields on the Body, Biological Effects of Pulsed Electromagnetic Fields, Bioelectromagnetic Healing, and Electromagnetism in Nature.
The Bioelectric Code: Reprogramming Cancer and Aging From the Interface of Mechanical and Chemical Microenvironments. Cellular membrane voltage (Vm), has been documented to exert control over cellular behavior both in culture and in vivo. Manipulating this fundamental cellular property influences a remarkable array of organism-wide patterning events, producing striking outcomes in both tumorigenesis as well as regeneration. These studies suggest that Vm is not only a key intrinsic cellular property, but also an integral part of the microenvironment that acts in both space and time to guide cellular behavior.
Inverse Drug Screening of Bioelectric Signaling and Neurotransmitter Roles: Illustrated Using a Xenopus Tail Regeneration Assay. the interplay between genetics, physiology, and anatomy in the control of structure and function. An important emerging field is the study of bioelectric signaling, the exchange of ion- and neurotransmitter-mediated messages among all types of cells (not just nerve and muscle cells), in the regulation of growth and form during embryogenesis, regeneration, and cancer.
Biophysical mechanisms complementing "classical" cell biology. This overview addresses phenomena in cell- and molecular biology which are puzzling by their fast and highly coordinated way of organization.
Precision knockdown of EGFR gene expression using radio frequency electromagnetic energy. Electromagnetic fields (EMF) in the radio frequency energy (RFE) range can affect cells at the molecular level. This technology opens vast possibilities of targeting a broad range of molecules with applications in medicine.
The cell's self-generated "electrome": The biophysical essence of the immaterial dimension of Life? In analogy with "genome," "proteome" etc. "electrome" (a novel term) stands for the totality of all ionic currents of any living entity, from the cellular to the organismal level. Cellular electricity is truly vital. Death of any cell ensues at the very moment that it irreversibly (excluding regeneration) loses its ability to realize its electrical dimension. Ionic/electrical currents associated with the cytoskeleton likely play a key role in cellular function and communication but have been largely overlooked. This paper aims at initiating a discussion platform from which students with different backgrounds but all interested in the immaterial dimension of life could engage in elaborating an integrating vocabulary and in initiating experimental approaches.
Environmental Light and Its Relationship with Electromagnetic Resonances of Biomolecular Interactions, as Predicted by the Resonant Recognition Model. The meaning and influence of light to biomolecular interactions, and consequently to health, has been analyzed using the Resonant Recognition Model (RRM). The RRM proposes that biological processes/interactions are based on electromagnetic resonances between interacting biomolecules at specific electromagnetic frequencies within the infra-red, visible and ultra-violet frequency ranges, where each interaction can be identified by the certain frequency critical for resonant activation of specific biological activities of proteins and DNA. We found that: (1) the various biological interactions could be grouped according to their resonant frequency into super families of these functions, enabling simpler analyses of these interactions and consequently analyses of influence of electromagnetic frequencies to health; (2) the RRM spectrum of all analyzed biological functions/interactions is the same as the spectrum of the sun light on the Earth, which is in accordance with fact that life is sustained by the sun light.
Bioelectromagnetic Medicine: Specific electromagnetic (EM) frequencies modulate cellular function to restore or maintain health. Ultrasmall magnetic intensities are biologically significant which suggests that EM signaling is endogenous to cell regulation, and consequently that the remarkable effectiveness of EM resonance treatments reflects a fundamental aspect of biological systems. Organisms contain mechanisms for generating biologically useful electric signals.
Nonlinear quantum phenomena and biophysical aspects of complexity related to health and disease. In this paper we discuss living systems as a non-linear self-interacting phenomenon, stabilized by the non-linear interaction between matter and self-created electromagnetic field. Such electromagnetic field can arise, in particular, as the radiation from electrosolitons which mediate the charge transport along macromolecules in metabolic redox processes. The non-linear nature of solitons results in an effective mechanism and leads to the synchronization of redox processes. It allows intra- and intercellular communication and long-range coherence in the system. One peculiar property of solitons is the resonant effect of external weak stimuli on their dynamics, which can explain the mechanism of low-intensity (non-thermal) electromagnetic therapies. We also discuss the stabilizing role of noise and spatial symmetry breaking in living organisms as open dissipative structures far from equilibrium, and health/disease states as the corresponding attractors of the system in the multi-parametric phase diagram. The essential role of electromagnetic potentials in self-regulation and self-healing processes is analyzed, based on the long-range matter-field interaction and fast information transfer, provided by the electromagnetic potentials.
Bioelectromagnetic Medicine: Specific electromagnetic (EM) frequencies modulate cellular function to restore or maintain health. Ultrasmall magnetic intensities are biologically significant which suggests that EM signaling is endogenous to cell regulation, and consequently that the remarkable effectiveness of EM resonance treatments reflects a fundamental aspect of biological systems. Organisms contain mechanisms for generating biologically useful electric signals.
Endogenous bioelectrical networks store non-genetic patterning information during development and regeneration. This research explores the relationships between bioelectrical networks and cell behaviors, morphogenesis, regeneration, and cancer. The body's bioelectric signaling is an autonomous layer of control not reducible to a biochemical or genetic account of cell state nor is the real-time dynamics of bioelectric communication among cells fully captured by transcriptomic or proteomic analyses. This is a strong scientific validation of TCM Eight Extraordinary Vessels theory which "provides a blueprint of understanding how energy is formed and flows in the body (see Fabric of the Soul: 8 Extraordinary Vessels for an overview of related TCM theory). This research provides direct verification of our intrinsic energetic nature as well as new insight into the relationship between physiology and bioelectricity, for which there is no current theory.
Life Rhythm as a Symphony of Oscillatory Patterns: Electromagnetic Energy and Sound Vibration Modulates Gene Expression for Biological Signaling and Healing. Our lives contain a seeming infinity of rhythms, with vibrations at the atomic and molecular levels and within biochemical reaction rates. The physiological correlates of the rhythms of the breath, heartbeat, and brain have been extensively studied and shown to be intimately related to our emotions, thoughts, and psychospiritual state.
Fashioning Cellular Rhythms with Magnetic Energy and Sound Vibration: a New Perspective for Regenerative Medicine. Compelling evidence recently shows that oscillations and synchronization of multiple oscillators is an essential requisite in living cells. Proper delivery of radioelectric fields is able to finely tune the expression of multipotency in human adult stem cells and to afford a direct reprogramming of human dermal skin fibroblasts into cardiac-, neuronal- and skeletal muscle-like cells. Vibrational/acoustic energy is an inherent property of living cells,
“Nanosized Voltmeter” Enables Cellular-Wide Electric Field Mapping. Electric fields (E fields) are found in and surround every living cell and are critical for the proper functioning of biological processes. These E fields are as widely varied as the high internal fields that preserve cells' energy-dependent nonequilibrium chemical steady state, or the cell-to-cell signaling fields in complex organisms. Biological E fields can affect the entire human body, such as the E fields associated with neural signals or cardiac rhythm. Externally applied E fields have been employed in the modulation of a variety of physiological and pathophysiological processes, and significant alteration/adaptation of cellular regulatory processes have been achieved. In the clinical management of wound healing, external E fields have been shown to accelerate repair (5). Both endogenous and applied E fields have been demonstrated to stimulate Xenopus nerve growth and regeneration (6). Exposure of cells in culture to short E field pulses induces electroporation of membranes for the delivery of nucleotides, peptides, and small proteins.
Clinical neurophysiology of brain plasticity in aging brain. Italian researchers have studied the process of physiological brain activity by utilizing non-invasive electromagnetic means. Their integrated approach to research utilizing modern neurophysiological techniques, including electroencephalography (EEG), event-related potentials (ERPs), and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), together with biological markers and structural and functional imaging is promising for large-scale, affordable, and noninvasive medicine and testing drug actions.
Bioelectromagnetic medicine: The role of resonance signaling. The discovery by Zhadin that ultrasmall magnetic intensities are biologically significant suggests that electromagnetic signaling is endogenous to cell regulation, and consequently that the remarkable effectiveness of EM resonance treatments reflects a fundamental aspect of biological systems.
Technical Background: The Glymphatic System.
The Theoretical and Computational Biophysics Group (TCBG), an NIH Resource for Macromolecular Modeling and Bioinformatics, was founded in 1989 and is located at the Beckman Institute of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). It is supported by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation and other federal and private agencies.
Bioelectromagnetism: Principles and Applications of Bioelectric and Biomagnetic Fields. This book looks at the application of engineering science and technology to biological cells and tissues that are electrically conducting and excitable. It describes the theory and a wide range of applications in both electric and magnetic fields. The similarities and differences between bioelectricity and biomagnetism are described in detail from the viewpoint of lead field theory. This book aims to help with the understanding of the properties of existing bioelectric and biomagnetic measurements and stimulation methods, and to aid with the designing of new systems.
The mission of the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) is to improve health by leading the development and accelerating the application of biomedical technologies. The Institute is committed to integrating the physical and engineering sciences with the life sciences to advance basic research and medical care. This is achieved through: research and development of new biomedical imaging and bioengineering techniques and devices to fundamentally improve the detection, treatment, and prevention of disease; enhancing existing imaging and bioengineering modalities; supporting related research in the physical and mathematical sciences; encouraging research and development in multidisciplinary areas; supporting studies to assess the effectiveness and outcomes of new biologics, materials, processes, devices, and procedures; developing technologies for early disease detection and assessment of health status; and developing advanced imaging and engineering techniques for conducting biomedical research at multiple scales.
Goal 1: Develop innovative biomedical technologies that integrate engineering with the physical and life sciences to solve complex problems and improve health
Goal 2: Enable patient-centered health care through development of point-of-care, wireless, and personal health informatics technologies
Goal 3: Transform advances in knowledge of cellular and molecular disease mechanisms into precise medical diagnostics and therapeutics
Goal 4: Develop medical technologies that are low-cost, effective, and accessible to everyone
Goal 5: Train the next generation of diverse and interdisciplinary scientists, bioengineers, and health care providers and promote the value of research that synergizes these disciplines
[Chapter 11 in Brain and Human Body Modeling: Computational Human Modeling at EMBC 2018]
This chapter presents an overview of electric conduction in living cells when viewed as a composition of bioelectric circuits. We review the cell’s components that are known to exhibit electric conduction properties and represent them as parts of a complex circuitry. In particular, we discuss conductivity of the membrane, ion channels, actin filaments, DNA, and microtubules, each of which play important roles in the biological functioning of the cell. A new picture emerges where electrical conduction within the cell is taking place in an integrated fashion and may explain synchronization and orchestration of the cell dynamics. [Free Full Text] [PubMed]
The future of EM depends on the ability of Western medicine to merge physics with biochemistry. Western medicine uses physics to diagnose and then immediately reverts to a biochemical model to treat. It is widely accepted that quantum physics drives the energy behind diagnostic equipment. Biophoton emissions as well as signal transduction and cell signaling communication systems in the body are also widely accepted in today’s medicine. However, the idea of a cellular and molecular global communication system involving energy fields is beyond the central dogma of Western medicine.
Current practices in allopathic medicine measure different types of energy in the human body by using quantum field dynamics involved in nuclear medicine, radiology, and imaging diagnostics. Once diagnosed, current treatments revert to biochemistry instead of using biophysics therapies to treat the disturbances in subtle energies detected and used for diagnostics. Quantum physics teaches us there is no difference between energy and matter. All systems in the human being, from the atomic to the molecular level, are constantly in motion-creating resonance. This resonance is important to understanding how subtle energy directs and maintains health and wellness in the human being. Energy medicine (EM), whether human touch or device-based, is the use of known subtle energy fields to therapeutically assess and treat energetic imbalances, bringing the body's systems back to homeostasis (balance). The future of EM depends on the ability of allopathic medicine to merge physics with biochemistry. Biophoton emissions as well as signal transduction and cell signaling communication systems are widely accepted in today's medicine. This technology needs to be expanded to include the existence of the human biofield (or human energy field) to better understand that disturbances in the coherence of energy patterns are indications of disease and aging. Future perspectives include understanding cellular voltage potentials and how they relate to health and wellness, understanding the overlap between the endocrine and chakra systems, and understanding how EM therapeutically enhances psychoneuroimmunology (mind-body) medicine. [PubMed].
Biofield Science and Healing: An Emerging Frontier in Medicine. A special issue of Global Advances of Health Medicine on Biofield Science, Research, and Clinical Applications. Citation: Global Adv Health Med. 2015;4(suppl):3-4. DOI: 10.7453/gahmj.2015.105. suppl. Articles include History, Terminology, and Concepts; Current Physics Perspectives; Framework for an Emerging Discipline; Overview of Biofield Devices; and Clinical Studies of Biofield Therapies: Summary, Methodological Challenges, and Recommendations.
ABSTRACT: This paper provides a scientific foundation for the biofield: the complex, extremely weak electromagnetic field of the organism hypothesized to involve electromagnetic bioinformation for regulating homeodynamics. The biofield is a useful construct consistent with bioelectromagnetics and the physics of nonlinear, dynamical, nonequilibrium living systems. It offers a unifying hypothesis to explain the interaction of objects or fields with the organism, and is especially useful toward understanding the scientific basis of energy medicine, including acupuncture, biofield therapies, bioelectromagnetic therapies, and homeopathy.
The biofield is defined as the endogenous, complex dynamic electromagnetic (EM) field resulting from the superposition of component EM fields of the organism that is proposed to be involved in self-organization and bioregulation of the organism. The components of the biofield are the EM fields contributed by each individual oscillator or electrically charged, moving particle or ensemble of particles of the organism (ion, molecule, cell, tissue, etc.), according to principles of conventional physics. The resulting biofield may be conceived of as a very complex dynamic standing wave. It has a broad spectral bandwidth, being composed of many different EM frequencies, analogous to a musical symphony with many harmonics that change over time.
However, evidence shows that not just the frequency of the EM field, but other field parameters including waveform, intensity, carrier frequency, modulation frequency, polarity, and time exposure patterns are involved in the specific biological responses to externally applied EM fields. There is no single or ultimate homeostatic balance point in biologic systems because they are self-organizing systems with many more possibilities than a single steady state. They also rely on dynamics other than feedback control such as strange attractors and innumerable flows of information to regulate themselves. Thus, the concept of homeostasis is limited and is undergoing replacement by a new concept, homeodynamics.
In homeodynamics, the processes that render dynamic stability proceed simultaneously at multiple levels of organization, from the molecular level to that of the whole being, and with various time scales. These processes are constantly adjusting to the myriad information flows and the entire lifeline or history of the organism. In this way, the organism integrates a huge number of information signals and responds appropriately. The biofield is proposed to act as a regulator of homeodynamics to coordinate life functions.
Rubik, B., The Biofield Hypothesis: Its Biophysical Basis and Role in Medicine. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, Vol. 8. No 6, 2002, pp. 703-717.
Human Energy Field: A Concept Analysis. The human energy field is defined as a luminous field of energy that comprises a person, extends beyond the physical body, and is in a continuous mutual process with the environmental energy field. It is a vital energy that is a continuous whole and is recognized by its unique pattern; it is dynamic, creative, nonlinear, unpredictable, and flows in lower and higher frequencies. The balanced HEF is characterized by flow, rhythm, symmetry, and gentle vibration.
Biofield Physiology: A Framework for an Emerging Discipline. Biofield physiology is proposed as an overarching descriptor for the electromagnetic, biophotonic, and other types of spatially-distributed fields that living systems generate and respond to as integral aspects of cellular, tissue, and whole organism self-regulation and organization. Medical physiology, cell biology, and biophysics provide the framework within which evidence for biofields, their proposed receptors, and functions is presented. As such, biofields can be viewed as affecting physiological regulatory systems in a manner that complements the more familiar molecular-based mechanisms. Examples of clinically relevant biofields are the electrical and magnetic fields generated by arrays of heart cells and neurons that are detected, respectively, as electrocardiograms (ECGs) or magnetocardiograms (MCGs) and electroencephalograms (EEGs) or magnetoencephalograms (MEGs).
Proteins, the building blocks in every cell, have usually been thought of as blobs of inert organic matter. Now scientists have caught one particular protein doing something incredible: conducting electricity. If the findings can be replicated and used, we could have ourselves a powerful new diagnostic tool for medical use, capable of identifying single protein molecules with a little blip of electrical current. More....
(1) Transmission from human to human: The term “biofield” here refers to some form of energy that is transmitted from one person to another during practices like External Qi Therapy, Reiki, Johrei, Polarity Therapy, Therapeutic Touch, Pranic Healing, and Healing Touch.
(2) Frequency Therapy: Technology for diagnosing and treating illness and chronic conditions: Energy-Based Medical Technologies and Therapies.
Qigong - Energy Medicine for the New Millenium. What is Energy Medicine?
"Everything vibrates. When you go down to the very basic structure of the atom, you get vibrations. Every cell vibrates; they are like little electric circuits that give off vibrations and frequency, and stick a million different vibrations together and they perform one particular [holistic] frequency. So, all the different parts of any mass, which is pretty much everything in the universe, vibrate. Like the heart vibrates at its particular frequency, although not everyone’s heart is at the exact same frequency, as it will vibrate at a unique specific frequency depending on whose body it’s in. And then the whole vibrates differently than the parts, so you and I vibrate differently. This is not something that is debatable. This is a fact of physics. But it’s something that for some reason Western science misses...There is a corruption of Western science so that it is not open to the blindingly obvious. What’s blindingly obvious is that everything vibrates. If you understand that everything vibrates, then—it’s the whole Gaia theory, where people say that everything is interlinked. It’s sort of a no-brainer, in as much as if everything vibrates then our thoughts and everything have a relationship to each other. You can measure a healing vibration. But for some reason science has chosen not to look at vibrations, and certainly not medical science, probably because there is no money in it. So everything has become chemically based as opposed to vibrationally based."
Matthew Silverstone in Quantum Health, Issue 17, May/June 2012.
Hypothesis on interactions of macromolecules based on molecular vibration patterns in cells and tissues. The molecular vibration patterns of structure-forming macromolecules in the living cell create very specific electromagnetic frequency patterns which might be used for information on spatial position in the three-dimensional structure as well as the chemical characteristics. Chemical change of a molecule results in a change of the vibration pattern and thus in a change of the emitted electromagnetic frequency pattern. These patterns have to be received by proteins responsible for the necessary interactions and functions.
Coherence and Entrainment
The bioenergetic basis of life is comprised of energy fields. Coherence (constructive interference) and entrainment are terms used to describe the generation, organization, and interaction of the fields.
Body function and well-being depends upon the degree of coherence which is reflected in the Heart Rate Variability (HRV). HRV is an indicator of Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) function. Generally speaking, relaxation and regeneration occurs when the ANS is in parasympathetic (highly coherent, or entrained) mode. Qigong moving meditation creates coherence and entrainment of body systems and cells.
The body generates electromagnetic fields of varying types and intensities. For instance, the heart generates an electromagnetic field many times greater than that of the brain. The electromagnetic fields of people have been measured from as far as six feet away using SQUIDS. This gives a real physical meaning to the term "charisma." Science is just beginning to investigate the properties of these fields. They have been part of energetic medicine and eastern spiritual and wellness practices for millenia. Different names refer to different parts or combinations of the fields, such as aura, chakra, dantien, meridians, and others.
"Coherence and chaos walk hand in hand in biological systems. Any living system is a complex entity interacting with the environment in many predictable and some unpredictable ways. Unpredictability stems from the fact that we are not able to understand the workings of the system. Thus, there is a need for mathematical and physical models for many functions of the body. For example, seemingly unrelated and chaotic behavior is considered "normal" in the function of neurons of the brain. Any coherent and correlated discharge of the neurons of the brain is considered unusual indicating need for close monitoring and possible intervention. However, for normal functioning of cardiac muscles, coordinated and systematic discharge of the neurons is necessary. Thus, in different parts of the biological system, different types of activities of the neurons are considered "normal."
Srinivasan T M. Entrainment and coherence in biology. Int J Yoga [serial online] 2015 [cited 2015 Oct 27];8:1-2.
The Institute of Heart Math is the first organization to systematically research human coherence and entrainment and make that research known to a wide audience. The Institute's mission is researching the link between emotions, heart-brain communication, and cognitive function. Just as oscillators provide the timing for computers, coordination of body function via rhythms such as heart beat and respiration are described by coherence and entrainment.
The following summary is from the Heart Math website:The term coherence is used to describe two or more waves (or systems) that are either phase- or frequency-locked. This is also called entrainment. In the coherent mode, respiration, heart rhythms, and blood pressure rhythms become entrained and oscillate at the same frequency. The term cross-coherence is used to specify this type of coherence. Note that this use of the term coherent is different than its use to describe coherent waves, which are man-made concentrated radiation that can harm biological organisms.Physiological coherence is a state characterized by:
An exchange of electromagnetic energy produced by the heart occurs when people touch or are in proximity. Signal averaging techniques are used to show that one's electrocardiogram (ECG) signal is registered in another person's electroencephalogram (EEG) and elsewhere on the other person's body. While this signal is strongest when people are in contact, it is still detectable when subjects are in proximity without contact.Sustained positive emotions affect bodily functions. Thus, there are physiological correlates of positive emotion. This is called psychophysiological coherence. This mode, characterized by heart rhythm coherence, increased heart-brain synchronization and entrainment of diverse physiological oscillatory systems, is associated with increased emotional stability, improved cognitive performance, and a range of positive health-related outcomes.
Additionally, individuals frequently report feelings of increased spiritual connectedness during psychophysiologically coherent states. Through the use of tools and technologies that foster positive emotions and psychophysiological coherence, individuals can effectively initiate a repatterning process, whereby habitual emotional patterns underlying stress are replaced with new, healthier patterns that establish increased emotional stability, mental acuity, and physiological efficiency.
The heart generates the largest electromagnetic field in the body. Its electrical field as measured in an electrocardiogram (ECG) is about sixty times greater in amplitude than the brain waves recorded in an electroencephalogram (EEG). The magnetic component of the heart's field, which is around five thousand times stronger than that produced by the brain, is not impeded by tissues and can be measured several feet away from the body with Superconducting Quantum Interference Device (SQUID)-based magnetometers. Clear rhythmic patterns in beat-to-beat heart rate variability are distinctly altered when different emotions are experienced. These changes in electromagnetic, sound pressure, and blood pressure waves produced by cardiac rhythmic activity are "felt" by every cell in the body , further supporting the heart's role as a global internal synchronizing signal1.1. McCraty R., Clinical Applications of Bioelectromagnetic Medicine, 2005.
Bioelectric signals can be used to detect early cancer. Biologists at Tufts University School of Arts and Sciences have discovered a bioelectric signal that can identify cells that are likely to develop into tumors. The researchers also found that they could lower the incidence of cancerous cells by manipulating the electrical charge across cells' membranes.
Ultra-weak Delayed Luminescence in cancer research: A review of the results by the ARETUSA equipment. The study of the photoinduced ultraweak photon emission in the optical wavelength range, namely the Delayed Luminescence, from human cells and tissues has an increasingly growing interest in view of its possible application in optical biopsy. Delayed Luminescence signals from normal and cancer cells are compared and the relationship between Delayed Luminescence and apoptosis is investigated.
Cancer physics: diagnostics based on damped cellular elastoelectrical vibrations in microtubules. This paper describes a proposed biophysical mechanism of a novel diagnostic method for cancer detection based on frequency selective absorption of electromagnetic waves by malignant tumors.
Multimodal polarization system for imaging skin cancer. An optical system is created that is capable of detecting tumor formations in vivo in real time by means of the spectrally resolved polarization imaging of light elastically scattered by tissue and imaging of fluorescence polarization of exogenous fluorophores. E. Salomatina-Motts, V. A. Neel, A. N. Yaroslavskaya. Optics and Spectroscopy. December 2009. Issue 6, Volume 107. 884-890.
Biophysical Insights into Cancer Transformation and Treatment. The authors present compelling evidence that biological cellular activity depends on the cell's generated electromagnetic field. The field's role in the directional transport of mass particles and electrons, organization of living matter, interactions between systems, and information transfer is extensively analyzed and described. This research represents a new contribution to understanding the biological activity of living cells and describes how cancer can be detected by decreased power in the electromagnetic fields generated by cells.
The Effects of Non-Invasive Radiofrequency Treatment and Hyperthermia on Malignant and Nonmalignant Cells. Non-invasive radio-frequency treatment caused declines in cancer cell viability and proliferation.
Also see Qigong and Energy Medicine for Cancer.