New York City-based brain-computer interface startup Synchron said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has authorized human clinical trials for its commercial implant, ahead of Elon Musk's Neuralink company.
For the early feasibility study, Synchron intends to implant its Stentrode device in the brain to help paralyzed patients operate digital devices by thought; the device is implanted via a blood vessel at the base of the neck, and steered toward a vessel in the brain.
The Stentrode communicates with a second device in the chest through a tiny wire, then a transmitter sends signals to an external computer near the patient.
Synchron's Thomas Oxley said, "There are a range of safety concerns that haven't been dealt with before [in previous tests], including cybersecurity, which is a big part of the discussions we have been having."
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