Elon Musk‘s brain-implant company Neuralink has received the green light from the Food and Drug Administration to commence its “first-in-human clinical study.”
What Happened: This milestone achievement for Neuralink comes after a series of setbacks and challenges faced by the company in its pursuit of FDA approval.
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In a tweet, the company wrote that this was the “result of incredible work by the Neuralink team in close collaboration with the FDA and represents an important first step that will one day allow our technology to help many people.”
Neuralink added, “Recruitment is not yet open for our clinical trial. We’ll announce more information on this soon!”
In a tweet, Musk congratulated the Neuralink team.
Neuralink had faced several hurdles on its journey to gain FDA approval. Despite Musk’s repeated predictions since 2019 about starting human trials for the brain implant, the company only submitted its application to the FDA in early 2022.
The initial application was rejected, as revealed by seven current and former employees who spoke to Reuters in March. The FDA raised concerns regarding the lithium battery of the device, the potential migration of the implant’s wires within the brain and the safe extraction of the device without causing damage to brain tissue.
Why It Matters: The FDA approval represents a crucial step forward for the field of brain-implant technology. The successful development and implementation of this technology could potentially revolutionize the treatment of various severe conditions, offering hope to individuals suffering from paralysis, blindness, and other disabilities.
Musk’s ambitious plan for Neuralink includes addressing conditions ranging from obesity, autism, depression, and schizophrenia to enabling web browsing and even telepathy.
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