Neuralink will hopefully start its first human trials later this year, according to CEO Elon Musk who revealed the timeline at the VivaTech event in Paris.
Last month the company received clearance from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its first-in-human clinical trial. The FDA confirmed that Neuralink has clearance to use its brain implant and surgical robot for trials but did not go into details on how many trialists will be part of the first cohort, nor the implant length. (via Reuters)
Since its founding in 2016, the company has faced several issues and concerns over testing and features of the device. These have included issues surrounding the device’s lithium battery, concerns over the implant’s wires migrating to the brain and the challenge of removing the device without damaging existing tissue. However, it appears that the company has met the standards of the FDA, and we will await test results later in the year.
The company has also faced significant pressure due to its animal testing failures in the past. In 2021, 25 out of 60 pugs were implanted with wrong-sized devices and were killed. Even with those concerns, the company’s value continues increasing and is now worth around $5 billion per privately executed stock trade, per Reuters.
So the question is: would you sign up for the Neuralink trial?