Clarice D. Aiello is a quantum engineer interested in how quantum physics informs biology at the nanoscale. She is an expert on nanosensors harnessing room-temperature quantum effects in noisy environments. Experiments suggest that nontrivial quantum mechanical effects involving spin might underlie biosensing phenomena as varied as magnetic field detection for animal navigation, metabolic regulation in cells and optimal electron transport in chiral biomolecules. Can spin physics be established – or refuted! – to ...
Clarice D. Aiello, UCLA Professor, covered quantum mechanics and its impact on biology. Quantum mechanics deals with the behavior of atomic and subatomic particles, such as electrons and protons. Specifically, she focuses on electron spin mechanics and how quantum spin alters chemical reactions. Cryptochrome is a protein that appears to be sensitive to magnetism and quantum spin states, and is a key protein in the human circadian rhythm apparatus. Birds may use electron spin mechanics to sense the earths magnetic field, and in some species early development is dependent on the presence of magnetic fields. This exciting new realm of biology is just beginning to be understood and may have profound implications on therapies to control the aging process.