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Seminar

An attempt for dialectics: what can we learn from interdigitating wet and dry research into structure and function underlying elec/mech activity of the heart

Kohl, P (Oxford)
Tuesday 21 July 2009, 14:45-15:00

Seminar Room 1, Newton Institute

Abstract

This lecture will briefly review key principles of the dialectic research method, and explore how this may be productive in the context of integrating cardiac electro-mechanics, using a combination of wet and dry research techniques to explore cardiac structure and function. Core concepts of dialectics include the notion (i) that there is a ‘unity of contradictions’ (i.e. seemingly opposing aspects of a matter ‘require’ each other, like day and night, or like wet & dry, structure & function, electrics & mechanics of the heart), (ii) that quantitative change accumulates to give rise to a change in quality of a matter or behaviour (like adding energy to bring water to the boil, or like bringing membrane potential to threshold), and (iii) that development moves in 3D spirals, not 2D circles (like boom and bust economy that – while perceived as ‘cyclic’ – tends to still involve a forward component, or like rejection of a modelling prediction that – while sending us back to the drawing board – will eventually yield an improved model [one hopes…]). The topical focus of the lecture will be on aspects relevant to cardiac mechano-electric coupling.

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