Elon Musk revealed this week that he would be comfortable implanting a chip developed by his firm Neuralink into one of his own children’s brains if the need arose.
The tech billionaire made claim while addressing a question potential safety concerns for Neuralink devices – both when they are actively implanted in a brain and during the process of removing the chip.
“If you ask a question like, in my opinion, would I be comfortable implanting this in one of my kids or something like that at this point, if they’re in a serious … like let’s say if they broke their neck, would I be comfortable doing it? I would,” Musk said during a question-and-answer session at a Neuralink event.
“We’re at the point where, at least in my opinion, it would not be dangerous,” Musk added.
Musk has touted the potential of Neuralink chips for years to enhance cognitive performance.
During the event at Neuralink headquarters on Wednesday night, Musk and other company officials touted the device’s potential benefits in assisting people who face disabilities, such as a loss of vision or motor function or in individuals who have suffered spinal injuries or become paralyzed.
“Even if someone has never had vision, ever, like they were born blind, we believe we can still restore vision,” Musk said.
The billionaire indicated that he also plans to get a Neuralink chip installed in his own brain in the future. Musk said Neuralink could begin human trials for the devices within six months, pending approval from the Food and Drug Administration.
“We want to be extremely careful and certain that it will work well before putting a device into a human,” Musk said.
So far, Neuralink has trailed behind Musk’s ambitious timelines for human use. He initially indicated the firm would seek FDA approval by the end of 2020. Last year, Musk said he hoped to begin human trials at some point in 2022 – a plan that is no longer feasible.
Neuralink has also faced sharp criticism from animal rights activists over its use of monkeys in clinical testing. Critics alleged in February that Neuralink had caused “extreme suffering” in its test subjects. The company denied wrongdoing.
Musk attended the Neuralink link while juggling his long list of other responsibilities, including serving as CEO of Tesla and Twitter.
Earlier this year, Musk caused a stir after revealing that he had fathered twins with Neuralink executive Shivon Zilis. The billionaire has 10 children.
With Post wires