Elon Musk has ambitious goals with his brain chip company Neuralink. The company now wants to test its brain implants on humans and has received the go-ahead from the responsible US authority.
Elon Musk announced in December that he would soon be testing his Neuralink brain implant on humans. Now he has apparently received approval for it in the USA.
The company announced on Twitterto have “received approval to start our first human clinical trial.” This was issued by the FDA, which is responsible for food and drug monitoring in the USA.
What is Neuralink planning?
Neuralink calls this approval “the result of the incredible work of the Neuralink team.” This was done “in close cooperation with the FDA”.
Elon Musk’s brain chip may one day cure neurological diseases. For example, the company wants to make it possible for people with paralysis to be able to move their muscles again. The chip should also enable blind people to see.
The approval of the human study by the FDA is therefore an important first step in order to “one day be able to help many people”.
Things don’t go according to plan
But not everything is going smoothly at Elon Musk’s brain chip company. Because the tests on humans should actually start years ago. Musk had already announced tests for the following year at the launch event in July 2019.
In the past, however, these had to be postponed again and again. The FDA last vetoed it in early 2022. Because the US authority expressed concerns about the safety of the brain chip.
And the company’s animal experiments have also been criticized. Because the animal protection organization Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) filed a complaint with the US Department of Agriculture in February 2022 about animal cruelty.
The accusation: Neuralink carried out invasive and deadly experiments on 23 macaque monkeys. Only seven animals are said to have survived the experiments.
When does the Neuralink study start?
However, despite the FDA approval that has now been granted, no start date for the clinical study of the brain implant has yet been announced.
According to the company, recruitment has not yet opened. However, the company plans to provide more information about the study and recruitment “soon”.