Elon Musk’s Neuralink said Thursday it has received regulatory approval to start the first in-human clinical study for its brain implant.
“We are excited to share that we have received the FDA’s approval to launch our first-in-human clinical study!” the company tweeted Thursday. “This is the result of incredible work by the Neuralink team in close collaboration with the FDA and represents an important first step that will one day allow our technology to help many people.”
No start date was announced for the clinical trial.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration did not immediately reply when asked late Thursday to confirm or comment on the matter.
Neuralink has been working for years on a brain-computer interface through wireless brain implants. In theory, they could be used to improve cognitive performance and aid people who suffer from loss of vision, motor functions or are paralyzed.
The FDA reportedly rejected the company’s previous request for human trials last year, citing safety concerns.
From December: Elon Musk says Neuralink could help create superhuman intelligence. But the technology could be a rare failure for one of his companies
In November, Musk — who’s co-founder and CEO of Neuralink — tweeted that he was “now confident that the Neuralink device is ready for humans,” and said he expected clinical trials to begin in six months.
He also said he would be comfortable implanting a Neuralink chip in one of his kids, if they needed it, and said he intends to get his own brain implant sometime in the future.
Last year, Reuters reported Neuralink was under investigation by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Inspector General over allegations that its experiments were causing undue suffering and deaths of its animal test subjects.