Neuralink, a company owned by Elon Musk, announced that it has received approval for the first human clinical trial of brain implants from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This was reported by Reuters with reference to the manufacturer.
Neuralink said the FDA approval is an important first step that will one day allow the company’s technology to help many people. At the same time, Neuralink did not specify the goals of the study but noted that the recruitment of participants has not yet begun.
Previously, Elon Musk has repeatedly stated the intentions of Neuralink to begin human trials. The company applied to the FDA for approval last year, but the agency rejected the application at the time, citing several issues. The main concerns were the device’s lithium batteries, the possibility of the implant’s wires migrating into the brain, and the issue of safe removal of the device.
According to Elon Musk, brain implants can cure a number of diseases, including obesity, depression, and schizophrenia. And also – to enable viewing of web pages and telepathy. He also stated that he is so confident in the safety of the devices that he is ready to implant them in his own children.
Recently Neuralink approached one of the largest neurosurgery centers in the US as a potential clinical trial partner as it prepares to test its devices on humans as soon as regulatory authorities allow. Neuralink has been developing brain implants since 2016.