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Elon Musk says the first human has received an implant from Neuralink, but other details are scant

According to Elon Musk, the first human received an implant from his computer-brain interface company Neuralink over the weekend. (Jan. 30)

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NEW YORK (AP) 鈥 According to Elon Musk, the first human received an implant from his computer-brain interface company Neuralink over the weekend.

In a Monday , the platform formerly known as Twitter, Musk said that the patient received the implant the day prior and was 鈥渞ecovering well.鈥 He added that 鈥渋nitial results show promising neuron spike detection.鈥

The billionaire, who co-founded Neuralink, did not provide additional details about the patient. When Neuralink announced in September that it would begin recruiting people, the company said it was searching for individuals with quadriplegia due to cervical spinal cord injury or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly known as ALS or Lou Gehrig鈥檚 Disease.

Neuralink is one of many groups working on linking the nervous system to computers, efforts aimed at helping treat brain disorders, overcoming brain injuries and other applications. There are more than underway, according to clinicaltrials.gov.

AP AUDIO: Elon Musk says the first human has received an implant from Neuralink, but other details are scant.

AP correspondent Norman Hall reports.

Neuralink reposted Musk鈥檚 Monday post on X, but did not publish any additional statements acknowledging the human implant. The company did not immediately respond to 老澳门六合彩鈥 requests for comment Tuesday.

Neuralink previously announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had approved its 鈥渋nvestigational device exemption,鈥 which generally allows a sponsor to begin a clinical study 鈥渋n patients who fit the inclusion criteria,鈥 the FDA said Tuesday. The agency pointed out that it can鈥檛 confirm or disclose information about a particular study.

Neuralink鈥檚 device is about the size of a large coin and is designed to be implanted in the skull, with ultra-thin wires going directly into the brain. In its September announcement, Neuralink said the wires would be surgically placed in a region of the brain that controls movement intention. The initial goal of the so-called brain computer interface is to give people the ability to control a computer cursor or keyboard using their thoughts alone.

In a separate Monday , Musk said that the first Neuralink product is called 鈥淭elepathy鈥 鈥 which, he said, will enable users to control their phones or computers 鈥渏ust by thinking.鈥 He added that intial users would be those who have lost use of their limbs.

It鈥檚 unclear how well this device or similar interfaces will ultimately work, or how safe they might be. Clinical trials are designed to collect data on safety and effectiveness.

Laura Cabrera, who researches brain science at Pennsylvania State University, said that even though Neuralink uses an innovative procedure 鈥 robotic surgery 鈥 to get the device in the brain, no one has implanted it before in humans and much remains unknown.

Brain surgery is 鈥渘ot a trivial thing,鈥 she said, pointing to significant potential risks such as brain hemorrhage or seizures. 鈥淎nd so I think we have to be mindful that even though they鈥檙e using a novel way to implant the device, we just don鈥檛 know if it鈥檚 truly going to be a 鈥 safer approach for human patients.鈥

She pointed out that Neuralink鈥檚 competitors plan to use their devices for medical applications only, but Musk has been outspoken about going beyond medicine. For example, Cabrera said, Musk has talked about implants for the masses that will allow people to record everything that happens to them and access the information when they want 鈥 which may raise red flags for some.

鈥淲e know that he has very bold claims,鈥 she said. 鈥淧eople not really assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the technology is something that I worry about.鈥

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Ungar reported from Columbia, Missouri. Video journalist Christine Nguyen contributed from Houston, Texas.

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老澳门六合彩 Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute鈥檚 Science and Educational Media Group. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

Grantham-Philips is a business reporter who covers trending news for 老澳门六合彩. She is based in New York.
Ungar covers medicine and science on the AP鈥檚 global health and science team. She has been a health journalist for more than two decades.