Elon Musk Confirms Neuralink Begins Human Trial
Elon Musk and his co-founders at the neurotech business Neuralink announced on Thursday that the Food and Drug Administration had given the company permission to carry out its first in-human clinical test. What do we expect from this? Let’s find out in this episode!
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The company has been working on a robotically implanted device that can decode brain activity and transmit information to computers. If it is approved by the US Food and Drug Administration, it will be a significant step forward. The business has exclusively used animals in their research up until this point.
The FDA has given the go-ahead for us to start our first-in-human clinical study, and we couldn’t be happier to share this!Musk retweeted the message and congratulated his team, calling it “an important first step that will one day allow our technology to help many people.”
The FDA released a statement on Friday even though it generally doesn’t confirm approvals for human clinical trials. The FDA “acknowledges and understands that Neuralink has announced that its investigational device exemption… for its implant/R1 robot was approved by the FDA and that it may now begin conducting human clinical trials for its device,” a spokeswoman for the agency said in a statement on Friday.
In the past, Musk has exaggerated the importance of regulatory approval. In 2017, Musk claimed on Twitter that his tunneling company, the Boring Company, had received “verbal govt approval” for an underground Hyperloop from New York to Washington, D.C. At the time, officials made no direct response to Musk’s claim, and it was obvious that no formal procedures had been followed to approve such a project.
What is Neuralink?
Neuralink is a privately held company that was established in 2016 and has operations in Fremont, California, as well as a sizable campus that is being built outside of Austin. According to data provider PitchBook, the company has over 400 workers and at least $363 million in funding.
In the realm of brain-computer interface, where scientists and engineers are working to create electronic implants that would decode brain activity and transmit it to computers, Neuralink has brought tremendous resources—as well as investor attention—to the work. This is thanks to Musk. People who are paralyzed or suffer from crippling diseases like amyotrophic lateral sclerosis may be able to regain function thanks to this technology, which has been under development for many years.
At least 42 individuals worldwide have gotten brain-computer implants thanks to businesses like Blackrock Neurotech and Synchron, who have already placed devices in subjects for clinical trials. These gadgets have made it possible for people with disabilities to perform actions that were formerly only possible in science fiction, such as a paralyzed man fist-bumping President Barack Obama with a robotic hand or an ALS patient who types by thinking about the keystrokes they want to make.
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