Neuralink founder Ilon Musk said the first patient to have a company-developed implant implant implanted in his brain is doing well.
“Initial results demonstrate the detection of promising neural impulses,” Musk said in a post on social networking site X.
Last year, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized the company to conduct the first human trial of its implant.
Musk also said that Neuralink’s first product will be called Telepathy.
Last September, the company opened enrollment for a study called PRIME to test the capabilities of the wireless brain-computer interface and evaluate the safety of the implant and surgical robot. The development is designed to help people with quadriplegia, or paralysis of all four limbs, control devices using their thoughts, according to the company’s website.
Earlier this month, Neuralink was fined for violating U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations regarding the transportation of hazardous materials. Last November, four U.S. lawmakers asked the SEC to investigate whether Musk committed securities fraud against Neuralink by allegedly misleading investors about the safety of a product the company was developing.
Neuralink’s technology would work primarily through an implant called “Link,” a device the size of a stack of five dimes that is placed in a person’s brain through invasive surgery.
Last year, California-based Neuralink had more than 400 employees and raised at least $363 million, according to Pitchbook.
While Musk’s project is getting a lot of attention in the press, he is hardly alone in trying to make progress in this field, which is officially known as brain-machine or brain-computer interface research.
Musk had previously experienced some delays in chip development and approached implant developer Synchron to join forces. Based in Australia, Synchron implanted its first device in a patient in the US back in July 2022. Unlike Neuralink, Synchron implantation does not require cutting into the skull.
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