Reaction: BNA President responds to Neuralink reports

1st Feb 2024

Earlier this week, there were reports that the US neurotech company Neuralink had implanted its first chip in the brain of a human patient. Details on the research are limited at this stage, and the results yet to be published, but this is one of a number of examples of research underway looking to developing neural interfaces for future use to help people with particular neurological conditions. 

Connecting the brain or nervous system to digital devices or IT systems (also known as brain-computer interfaces), neural interfaces have the potential to deliver life-changing therapies, enhancements in concentration, decision-making and collaboration, as well as improvements to well-being. This is an area of neuroscience research that we believe would benefit from further research funding in the UK. 

Prof Tara Spires-Jones, President of the British Neuroscience Association, UK Dementia Research Institute Group Leader, and Deputy Director of the Centre for Discovery Brain Sciences at the University of Edinburgh says:

“The idea of brain-machine interfaces like Neuralink has been around for a while with several companies and many academic scientists working in the area.  The idea of brain-nervous system interfaces has great potential to help people with neurological disorders in future and is an excellent example of how fundamental neuroscience research is being harnessed for medical advances. In recent research trials (not related to Neuralink), scientists have been able to implant brain-spine interfaces which help people with paralysis to walk and other work shows promising results in computers interpreting brain waves and brain scans to allow people who can’t speak to communicate. However, most of these interfaces require invasive neurosurgery and are still in experimental stages thus it will likely be many years before they are commonly available.”


Interview on BBC News 30/01/2024

Interview on CNN 30/01/2024


Interview on BBC 5Live – (starts 1:16:00, available for 28 days)

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