Elon Musk’s Neuralink Chip is approved for human testing finally
Neuralink has got approval for human trials of its brain implant from the US Food and drug administration (USFDA). This is a significant milestone in its mission of developing a brain implant with at least 100 times more brain connections than devices currently approved by the USFDA. Neuralink has been working on this mission since its inception in 2016. It seems that Elon Musk established this neurotechnology company with the ambition to develop the said brain implant called Neuralink chip.
What is a Neuralink Chip?
Neuralink chip being developed by Elon Musk’s neurotechnology company Neuralink is a class III medical device called BCI (brain-computer interface). This coin-sized device called a link is implanted in a disk-shaped cutout in the skull. A precision surgical robot implants the link and connects it with certain neurons in the brain through 1000 tiny threads. Bluetooth signal connects the device to a computer.
Benefits of Neuralink Chip
This device can provide great benefits to mankind but the only concern is safety. If this device can work safely in humans then the following benefits can be reaped.
- This BCI device can give amputees natural motor skills by taking control of prosthetic limbs precisely.
- It can revolutionize the treatment of medical conditions like epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, and spinal cord injuries.
- Can become vitally important for the treatment of schizophrenia, tinnitus, depression, autism, and obesity.
FDA’s concerns delaying human trials
Elon Musk had said way back in February 2021 that Neuralink was in talks with the USFDA to start human trials of its brain implant but Neuralink got approval on 25 May 2023. This delay has been due to some concerns that USFDA had regarding the said brain implant. USFDA had a whole lot of issues to be resolved before human trials could commence delaying the approval for human trials. It can be easily inferred that only after the resolution of issues to the satisfaction of USFDA approval has come. Following are some concerns regarding the success of this brain implant.
- Safety of surgery – A precision surgical robot is to implant the chip and its high efficiency in implanting and removing the chip needs to be ensured.
- Safe battery – The device needs to be powered using a battery and it is a known fact that batteries tend to overheat and even explode.
Side effects – It is paramount to ensure that the device doesn’t cause any side effects. This type of device may cause headaches, seizures, etc.
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