Elon Musk’s Neuralink to start human trials this year, as long as ‘things go well’

Following an appearance on audio drop-in service Clubhouse where he briefly discussed some Neuralink projects involving monkeys playing games, Elon Musk has stated that the brain-computer interface startup is looking to accelerate its pace to enable human trials as soon as possible. Provided that things go well, the Tesla and SpaceX CEO remarked that human trials for Neuralink’s technology could begin as early as this year. 

Musk’s update came as a response to a tweet from Twitter user Hamoon Kamai, who stated that he is available for clinical studies at Neuralink. Kamai noted that he was in a car accident 20 years ago, resulting in him being paralyzed from the shoulders ever since. In his response, Musk stated that the brain-computer interface startup is prioritizing safety and is in close communication with the FDA. 

“Neuralink is working super hard to ensure implant safety & is in close communication with the FDA. If things go well, we might be able to do initial human trials later this year,” Musk wrote. 

Elon Musk has mentioned Neuralink several times in his recent excursions on Twitter. Just recently, the CEO posted about job openings at the company, while highlighting that Neuralink’s goals are “species-level important” in the future. Musk later added that those interested in working for Neuralink, particularly those with skills and experience on advanced wearables, phones, or robots, could work at either the company’s Bay Area or Austin locations

Neuralink’s brain implant device has already gone through some refinements over the years. During its August 2020 presentation, Elon Musk unveiled the design for Link V0.9, which is noticeably sleeker than the device that the company featured during its Summer 2019 presentation. The company’s implant robot, which would be handling the installation of the Neuralink device, also featured some improvements over its previous iteration. 

While Neuralink’s long-term goal may be to achieve a degree of symbiosis with artificial intelligence, the company’s short-term goals are a lot more grounded. Musk, for one, has noted that Neuralink’s technology could help cure neurological conditions like Alzheimer’s, dementia, and spinal cord injuries, allowing those afflicted with these conditions to have a second chance at living a full life. 

Watch Neuralink’s newest recruitment video below.

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Elon Musk’s Neuralink to start human trials this year, as long as ‘things go well’
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