Neuralink human trials could begin in about six months, devices could restore vision and mobility

neuralink show and tell
Credit: Neuralink

Nueralink hosted their Show and Tell event on Wednesday night, where CEO Elon Musk revealed the latest advancements the brain implant company has achieved. Musk also revealed Neuralink is getting closer to beginning human trials, which could start in about six months.

During the more than two hour event, Musk and other Neuralink employees talked about how far the company has progressed since their last demonstration in April 2021. The star of the show in that demonstration was Pager, a 9-year old Macaque, who played the video game Pong using only his mind.

On Wednesday a different monkey name Sake was shown telepathically typing out “can i please have snacks.”

Another video was shown where the monkeys were trained to sit under a wireless charger to recharge their implants.

While all of the tests have so far been conducted on animals, Musk says Neuralink has submitted all of the required paperwork to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to begin human trials.

If all goes well Musk expects they should be able to begin human trials in as little as six months, but stressed that their device is ready, it is now just a matter of working through the paperwork and approval process.

Some of the early human trials will focus on restoring vision, something Musk believes they will be able to do even if the person was born blind, or restore movement for people who have a severed spinal cord and are paralyzed.

One of the first humans to have a Neuralink device implanted in their brain could be Musk himself, who said during the event he during a future demo he will have one implanted.

The process to get a Neuralink device implanted takes only about 15 minutes, and is done by a robot which inserts up to 64 flexible “threads” into the brain. The device is very small and will be upgradeable – “I’m pretty sure you would not want an iPhone 1 in your head if an iPhone 14 was available,” Musk explained.

You can watch the full demonstration below.

 

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