Self Gravity in Living Mass - Unexplored Invisible Foundation Explored
Iresh Ranjan Bhattacharjee
A dancer needs a platform for his/her show. Physiology or genetic functionality of living organism needs a similar foundation that is often been ignored in biology. Invisible binding force of self-gravity plays this vital role of foundation for living mass (Fig 1).
I am excited that my findings on various phenomena of self or intrinsic gravity - fit well to describe various little understood biological phenomena (Fig 2).
I first narrated my investigation on intrinsic gravity on publishing a mini pocket book titled “Gravity Dictates Life-Death and Biological Growth” in 1988, (in a half baked condition of course) could arouse interest among people.
Little information was available on gravity and biology then, except some rudimentary information from space biology experiments.
Most of the people run after 'literature' to know 'nature'. Formal education is therefore taken as 'yardstick' to learn literature and then to know 'nature'. But in exceptional cases reverse happens. Newton studied 'nature'- why apple fells on earth? Why not it rushes away from earth? Later on, he came to the conclusion on "Universal Laws of Gravitation".
Einstein was struck (while travelling by train) that whatever we see are not true. These are relatively true - giving the thought on theory of relativity.
George Mendel observed in his church garden that the generation wise colour of flowers in pea plant changes in a definite proportion - giving rise to science of genetics.
Fibonacci observed phyllotaxy follows a particular sequential numbers - giving rise to Fibonacci numbers in mathematics.
There are many other similar instances of development of science and knowledge from reverse direction "nature to literature".
I was similarly fascinated over a simple question from my boyhood on keen bservation of nature "Why apple itself is round? Why not square? Why all living things are round? Starting from tiny bacteria to giant animals (generated from eggs) are round/ or gyrate shape. Which force could make them round?
Surface tension can make water bubble round. But when I transplanted three rice seedlings in a bunch, the common canopy (curved top) at the end of vegetative or reproductive phase becomes round. Though of same genetics, same age, same nutrition including quality of photosynthetic sunlight, why middle plant gets taller than the neighbouring plants in the bunch (Fig 3)? What is the invisible unconnected surface tension?
Why visceral fat accumulates in the abdomen? Why earth’s attraction fails to work to drag all fats to the human feet?
Similarly many other questions from “nature” arose in my mind from boyhood. I then tried to search out the probable cause from the “literature”. But my basic question “Why round - why not square?” remained unanswered satisfying all corners.
I started my investigation on self study of more than 30 discrete sciences including astrophysics, geophysics, rheological, mechanical, biomedical engineering etc. I had to make quick experimentation and make observations in most non-orthodox manner of research.
Sometimes, I had to venture hazardous exposure to hostile environment, risking all damages to personal health. I venture to interact with scientists of diverse disciplines of science. In 1989, delegates at the Indian Science Congress Association got so much excited on my presentation on gravity and biology that they compelled the Chairman to extend the presentation time for more than an hour. Finally after long meticulous study, interactions and observations, I came to the conclusion that "Self Gravity" is active within biological mass which is acting as invisible force that make foundation of all living organisms.
How self-gravity could be strong in biomass at miniature scale?
Gravity is the building block of the universe. Among the basic forces (nuclear, electro-magnetic & gravity), gravity acts on "mass". Living organism without "mass" cannot be imagined.
Biology starts in the particle hierarchy in non-Newtonian state, with accumulation of ‘mass’ at organelles or cell level (Fig 4). Theoretical calculation shows that exertion of gravitational forces gets increased from 0.0007 to 6.6726 dynes when quantity in two masses increase from 10-4 to 10-2 grams under same separation distance of 10-6 centimeter.
Similarly when separation distance is decreased from 10-6 centimeter to 10-10 centimeter for the same two masses of 10-4 grams each, the gravitational force is increased from 0.0007 to 66,726 dyne. Why biology should ignore intrinsic gravity then, if the net force in terms of differential strength of self gravity in a system of cells at nano to micron level could be measured with adequate statistical mechanics?
Group of researchers now doubted that the weakness of gravity at miniature scale (tabletop) may not be an intrinsic property. The gravity may have “compact extra dimensions at short range”. The Newton’s inverse-square law would be valid if there is no additional dimension. However, if there are two additional dimensions, the dependence of the gravitational force would change from 1/r2 to 1/r4, or the gravitational potential could take the following form:
If dividing by 1/r2 is a small number, dividing by 1/r4 (twice of 1/r2) can make the corresponding gravitational force much stronger. On the other hand, biological materials are mostly non-Newtonian soft matter which has mesoscopic structures with length scales of 1 µm and less.
Unlike fluid (say, water) which could return back to its original position after withdrawal of stress, soft matter displays a range of fascinating generic properties such as ability to ‘self assemble’ into complex structures, a large number of internal degrees of freedom, weak interactions between structural elements, and a large thermal fluctuations at room temperature, a wide variety of forms, sensitivity of equilibrium structures under metastable states to external conditions.
Since little progress has been made so far in study on soft matter mechanics, it is not possible to get insight to systematize understanding as per chronological initiation of various living events like temporal rhythm, bulging, crest, trough etc. under the influence of intrinsic and extrinsic force of gravity sequentially like first, second, third order of mechanical vibration second by second for say, 0.03 million seconds/year of initiation from reference central (core) point of the mass.
Mechanism of separation from extrinsic gravity
Arguments came from physicists that stronger earth's gravity would swamp the intrinsic gravity of small biomass. But moon, being self gravitating body could retain its identity even being swamped by the gravitational field of the earth, solar system or the universe. On close examination, clue was found on keeping distance for intrinsic from extrinsic gravity.
An egg floats on saline water, on working against earth's gravity, due to buoyant force. Let self-gravitating biomass being powered by metabolic energy (ME) be in the accelerated reference frame, manifesting its physiological and genetic functionality. Metabolically inert infrastructures (MII) consist of mainly fluids, salts and dissolve substances. Depending upon diverse condition of living organisms, ‘Metabolically Inert Infrastructure (MII)’ placed in the co-moving non-accelerated reference frame that are relatively stationary or at constant velocity, or non-aligned or acting in opposite direction of the energized accelerated self gravitating biomass or of the steady state supporting inertial reference frame at the specific point of time.
The situation is similar to a small child playing football in its own way mimicing adult footballer within a compartment of a running train. Here football is in the accelerated reference frame and compartment is in the non-accelerated reference frame which is pivoted through wheels over inertial reference frame of the ground earth (Fig 5). Thus role of ‘fluid’, 'medium' can be thought of as anti-gravitational mechanism.
Whether a living organism is a gravitating body or not?
Primary characteristic of self-gravitating body is its centre having a boundary of attraction, as gravitational force is a function of the radial distance from the core. In thirty one day human embryo, heart, the first body organ to be functional, occupying the central position, acts as core. Human cardiovascular system consists of the “pump” (heart), “pipes” (blood vessels), and “control system” (nerves, hormones, and local factors). Pump in and pump out action can therefore be expected from the stress exerted on and away from the core of a gravitating body. Central position (core) changes from heart to abdominal portion with consecutive accumulation of mass with passing of age (Fig 6). Pump system of the heart once commissioned remains intact for life.
Isostatic balance in a gravitating body
Isostatic balance i.e. balances between lighter and heavier mass in relation to centre of self-gravity is a common phenomenon in all gravitating bodies including earth. Subduction in an area is compensated by formation of mountain on other side due to action of self gravity of the earth. In biological growth, isostatic balance also happens around self-gravity (ignoring minor circumstantial exceptions). Head (especially back) consists of solid mass of brain, muscle, and bone which is much heavier (greater specific gravity) than water on equal volume basis or than of bone and muscle or fatty and air-containing body tissues.
During and after embryonic growth, brain’s higher weight is compensated by continued growth towards human leg- an isostatic balancing act of self gravity around central position (Fig 7). As chest and abdominal cavity are mostly fat and air, shoulder blades could buoyed up above the surface by the air filled lungs readily than head or legs (consist mostly of bone and muscle) during swimming.
Symmetry in morphological structure in plant and animal
Mass of the living organisms are enclosed in a defined structure called biomembrane which is a lipid bilayer, composed of a double layer of lipid-class molecules, specifically phospholipids, with occasional proteins intertwined. All animal cells are composed mainly of a protein called actin (often referred to as one of the muscle proteins). Actin is a polymer of polymers. Globular actin polymerizes and stabilizes to form semi-rigid filamentous actin which exists in high concentrations in the cell cortex. The cell cortex gives the cells their rigidity, while its deformation plays a crucial role in helping the cells to move along surfaces.
In case of plants, Ferulic acid (Trans-4-hydroxy-3-methoxycinnamic acid) a phenolic compound is present in the cell wall. It promotes formation of side bonds between different chains in polymer cell wall, which increases the adhesion between neighbouring components. Cross-linking provides good "sticking power" between primary cell walls.
The capacity of adhesion of plant cells with more rigidity and strength has made all the difference in morphology of plant and animal. Direct effect of geophysical force predominates in the expression of the root development of plant making the plant symmetry of a cone in contrast to bilateral symmetry in animals.
Bilateral symmetry and convectional morphogenic development in animals
Though dictated by gravity, the earth is not completely round or spherical; there are continents, ridges, trenches, ocean and mountains and other geo-morphological structural features due to thermal convection active in the mantle. Similarly thermal convection active in the embryo is the driving mechanism for development of bilateral symmetry and morphogenic development in animals (Fig 8).
During gastrulation phase of embryonic development in animals, there are two or more layers of cells. These are ectoderm externally, the mesoderm next to this and the endoderm on the inside. The rearrangements by which these germinal layers come to occupy these positions vary considerably between animal groups. The ectoderm is the origin of the epidermis and the nervous system, the mesoderm is the source of muscles, the circulatory system, the lining of the body cavities and sex organs, excretory system and most of the skeletons. The endoderm forms the gut and its associated digestive glands and a variety of other organs.
At certain temperature difference between inner and outer, more specifically between different layers of cells in the germinal layers, the motion of the soft condense matter sets in, as the thermal expansion lowers the density of the inner fluid from the neighbouring portion. Warmer and comparatively lighter fluid produces a fountain type convectional flow pattern within the bounds of self gravity, depending upon respective polymeric constitution and rheological (soft condensed matter) property of the fluid. At neurula stage, the ectoderm gives rise to the central nervous system in convectional flow pattern. Sensory organs and the brain are connected at the fore-end. Mesoderm gives rise to a regular flow of circuit in blood vascular system in a convectional manner. Other organs including limbs, eyes are formed in same convectional manner.
Mass balance and self gravity in plants
‘Mass balance’ in plants science i.e. matching change in export from the source leaves to roots, grain etc., is a term used to explain sustained carbon fluxes out of a source leaf that is equal the capacity of the sinks to utilize it. Phloem loading of (solute-regulated) nutrients responds to changes in sieve tube turgor. With higher gravitation pressure, volume of phloem path would decrease, where as lower pressure of self gravity in phloem path would change the sieve tube turgor and hydrostatic pressure gradient- resulting in higher flow of nutrients (transport of food materials, such as sugars and proteins, synthesized within a plant).
Thus self-gravitational pressure acts as signal linking sources and sinks coupling (Fig 9). Shoot-root ratio is considered an indicator for plant health in terms of growth, survival, mortality and tolerance to stress condition. Compensatory action of self gravity is also available among yield components of crop like higher tillering per plant is counterbalanced by decrease in length of panicle or number of grains per panicle or decrease in individual grain size.
Roots are comparatively denser than shoot on equal volume basis. Due to mass balance within self gravitating plant, root growth dominates during early period followed by shoot growth.
Body mass index (BMI) and human health
Body mass index (BMI), based on height, weight (measure of gravitational mass) and age (capacity to generate metabolic energy) is considered as index of human health. There is a strong correlation between central obesity (accumulation of visceral fat in abdominal region) and cardiovascular disease. Disproportionately higher accumulation of mass in the centre (as if entire mass in the sphere of influence is concentrated at a central/ core point) due overweight or obesity leads to higher gravitational pressure over ‘pump in’ action in the heart.
Since gravitational stress is more at the centre and the breaking point of a closed circuit of blood flow system lies at the farthest/ weakest point from the centre, incidence of cerebro-vascular accident or ‘stroke’ is with the elderly people with the disproportionate increase in potential energy. An air filled pressurized cylindrical balloon gets cracks at the farthest point and not at the centre.
Mass and metabolic energy
Compressive action of self or intrinsic gravity in biomass is to be counterbalanced by the outward metabolic energy of the biomass to register as living. Metabolic energy is related to ‘Mass’, an yardstick of gravity. One would wander why biologist could remain oblivious of the ‘Mass’ as a simultaneous measure for intrinsic gravitational force. It is to be pointed out that relationship between mass and metabolic energy of the living organism is reflected primarily by the consumption of oxygen molecule per hour i.e. 'Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) which remains controversial for last 150 years.
Max Rubner (1880) reported that mammalian basal metabolic rate (BMR) was proportional to mass (M 2/3). Max Kleiber (1932), supported by Brody (1945) modified proportionality to mass (M3/4) in organisms ranging from simple unicells to plants and endothermic vertebrates. Warm blooded, cold blooded and unicellular animals fit on different curves. Kleiber’s famous mouse-to-elephant curve and quarter-power scaling is often regarded as ubiquitous in biology.
Harris-Benedict equation of 1919 calculates total heat production at complete rest based on weight, stature (height), and age, and with the difference in basal metabolic rate (BMR) for men and women being mainly due to differences in body weight. MD Mifflin and ST St Jeor in 1990 created new equation with +5 for males and −161 for female or Katch-McArdle formula based on lean body mass in kilogram with woman whom, for example, has a body fat percentage of 30%, BMR would be 1262 kcal per day. To calculate daily calorie needs, this BMR value is multiplied by a factor with a value between 1.2 and 1.9, depending on the person's physical activity level (PAL).
Therefore, a broad conclusion was made that basal metabolic rate (molecule of Oxygen per hour) at rest is proportional to intrinsic gravitational energy, whereas energy expenditure due to physical activity level (PAL) would be proportional to extrinsic gravitational energy.
Weight & body surface area (BSA)
In physiology and medicine, for many clinical purposes, the body surface area (BSA) is a better indicator of metabolic mass. Various calculations have been published to arrive at the BSA without direct measurement, starting in 1916 with the Dubois & Dubois formula, Boyd's Formula,1935, Gehan EA and George SL in 1970 for cancer chemotherapy, Haycock GB, Schwartz GJ, Wisotsky DH formula (in children) 1978, Mosteller RD formula published in 1987, National Cancer Institute formula- all are based on weight and height.
The amount of fluids to be administered through human intra-venous is determined through calculation of body surface area (BSA). As per Mosteller formula, BSA in m2 = √weight (kg) X height (cm)/3600. "Normal" BSA is generally taken to be 1.7 m²: Average for men being 1.9; women-1.6; 9 years child-1.07;10 years child-1.14; 12-13 years child-1.33; neonate- 0.25; 2 year old child- 0.5 m2 respectively. How weight could be a parameter for calculating surface area? As weight (synonym: mass or gravitational force) cannot be a component of ‘area’, we assume that part of the calculation is embraced considering contribution of mass i.e. self gravity. Therefore calculation needs re-examination in the light of self gravitation bio.
These observations from nature to literature for long 40 years has now culminated into a new academic discipline named as "Self Gravitation Bio" by the Biophysical Society, USA in 2008 after it was presented as study on "Biomechanics of intrinsic gravity". Further in depth analysis/ conclusion affecting space biology, evolutionary biology etc. has made this new academic discipline to be the "invisible foundation" upon which physiological and genetic functionality of living organism depends.
Some References as appeared in the text:
Harris J, Benedict F (1918). "A Biometric Study of Human Basal Metabolism". Proc Sci U S a 4 (12): 370–3. doi:10.1073/pnas.4.12.370. PMID 16576330.
Rubner, M. (1883) Zeitschrift fur Biologie 19, 536–562.; Kleiber, M. (1932) Hilgardia 6, 315–353.; Brody, S. (1945) Bioenergetics and Growth (Reinhold, New York).
Mosteller RD. Simplified Calculation of Body Surface Area. N Engl J Med. 1987 Oct 22;317(17):1098. (letter);
DuBois D, DuBois EF. A formula to estimate the approximate surface area if height and weight be known. Arch Int Med 1916 17:863-71;
Haycock GB, Schwartz GJ, Wisotsky DH. Geometric method for measuring body surface area: A height weight formula validated in infants, children and adults. The Journal of Pediatrics 1978 (93):1:62-66.;
Gehan EA, George SL. Estimation of human body surface area from height and weight. Cancer Chemother Rep 1970 54:225-35.;
Boyd E. The growth of the surface area of the human body. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1935. (From: http://www.ispub.com/journals/IJA/Vol2N2/bsa.htm).
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