Elon Musk's Neuralink to start human trial for brain implant chip

Approval for first human trial on paralysis patients comes after challenges with regulators

Neuralink’s robotic system for inserting electrodes into the brain. Photo: Neuralink
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Billionaire Elon Musk's brain-chip start-up Neuralink said on Tuesday that it had received approval from an independent review board to start the first human trial of its brain implant for paralysed patients.

“We are happy to announce that we’ve received approval from the reviewing independent institutional review board and our first hospital site to begin recruitment for our first-in-human clinical trial,” Neuralink said.

The “groundbreaking investigational medical device trial for our fully implantable, wireless brain-computer interface aims to evaluate the safety of our implant and surgical robot, and assess the initial functionality of our BCI for enabling people with paralysis to control external devices with their thoughts.”

The study will test the safety and efficacy of Neuralink's wireless, implantable brain-computer interface, to enable people with paralysis to control external devices with their thoughts, the company said.

Neuralink said patients with paralysis due to cervical spinal cord injury or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis may qualify for the trial.

Updated: September 19, 2023, 8:59 PM