FDA okays human brain chip testing
Future. A startup called Synchron has received FDA approval to test a brain-computer interface on humans — yes, a technological implant on brains. The company beat Neuralink to the punch, but both companies have the same goals: letting people control devices with their brains… and maybe even eventually upload consciousness to a server.
It’s in the blood
Our brains are about to become more like computers.
- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved for Synchron to begin testing implantable brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) on humans.
- The company has a patented “Stentrode” motor neuroprosthesis device that is “delivered into the brain via the blood vessels” — the only one of its kind.
- The minimally-invasive operation takes two hours similar to a heart stent. No wires are required.
The 20-person company plans to start trials at New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital this year.
Synchron has already been conducting human trials in Australia, which are reportedly going well. Two out of four of the trial participants can “control their devices to text and type through direct thought” and are texting, shopping online, and managing finances without researcher supervision.
CEO Thomas Oxley said that the company’s near-term goal is to help paralyzed patients use the tech to “wirelessly control external devices by thinking about moving their limbs,” such as phones and computers. Funny enough, that’s exactly what Elon Musk’s brain-chip company Neuralink said last week when they completed raising a $205 million Series C. Neuralink still doesn’t have FDA approval.