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Musk’s Neuralink starts recruiting volunteers to test brain implants in people

Elon Musk at the Vivatech technology startups and innovation fair at the Porte de Versailles exhibition center in Paris, on June 16, 2023. (Alain Jocard/AFP)
Elon Musk at the Vivatech technology startups and innovation fair at the Porte de Versailles exhibition center in Paris, on June 16, 2023. (Alain Jocard/AFP)

Elon Musk’s startup Neuralink says it has started recruiting volunteers to test its brain implants in people.

“We’re excited to announce that recruitment is open for our first-in-human clinical trial,” the company announces on X.

“If you have quadriplegia due to cervical spinal cord injury or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), you may qualify,” it says.

In May, the company said it received clearance from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its first in-human clinical study for its technology, which is intended to let brains interface directly with computers.

The aim of Neuralink implants is to enable human brains to communicate directly with computers, Musk said during a presentation by the startup in December.

Musk said the company would try to use the implants to restore vision and mobility in humans who had lost such abilities.

“We would initially enable someone who has almost no ability to operate their muscles… and enable them to operate their phone faster than someone who has working hands,” he said.

“As miraculous as it may sound, we are confident that it is possible to restore full body functionality to someone who has a severed spinal cord,” he said.

Beyond the potential to treat neurological diseases, Musk’s ultimate goal is to ensure that humans are not intellectually overwhelmed by artificial intelligence (AI), he said.

AFP contributed to this report

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