May 14, 2024 — In a recent paper, Prof. Chaim Gilon from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Dr. Gerard Marx from MX Biotech present an innovative integration of two notable neuroscience theories: the Global Neuronal Network (GNW) hypothesis and the Tripartite Mechanism of Memory. The study, published in the International Journal of Psychiatry Research, provides fresh perspectives on the complex phenomena of consciousness and memory.

The research tackles a significant challenge in the study of consciousness that has long been considered insurmountable. Dr. Marx and Prof. Gilon propose that memory plays a pivotal role in shaping consciousness, contrasting the idea that computer-based Information Theory provides a sufficient framework for understanding neural memory. They contend that the emotional content stored within the neural network diverges from standard computer data, laying the foundation for neural memory and adding depth and significance to conscious experience.

The researchers suggest integrating the GNW theory with the Tripartite Mechanism of Memory to better understand how the brain creates experiential memories. In their model, they propose that the complex electrochemical activities of individual neurons are unified by the brain’s structural units, creating a unified network that facilitates consciousness through emotional memory.

The researchers’ key findings include a proposed concept of a “brain cloud,” which highlights the interconnected flow of information throughout the brain’s anatomical regions facilitated by the Global Neuronal Workspace. In addition, they identified a tripartite mechanism for neural memory, wherein neurons utilize trace metal cations and neurotransmitters to encode emotive states within the extracellular matrix. This study underscores the evolutionary importance of bacterial chemical signaling processes in the development of neural memory and consciousness in complex organisms.

Through a biochemical lens, the research elucidates how life transitions to consciousness via memory evolution. By mapping the progress of neural net signaling from bacterial chemical communication to primate consciousness, the study provides a comprehensive framework for exploring the intricate interplay among memory, consciousness, and evolution.

The research paper, “’ Consciousness’ as a Fusion of the Global Neuronal Network (GNW) Hypotheses and the Tripartite Mechanism of Memory,” can be accessed here.


Gerard Marx1, Chaim Gilon2


  1. MX Biotech
  2. Institute of Chemistry, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel