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Elon Musk's Neuralink under investigation after 'killing 1,500 animals' for research

Elon Musk's Neuralink under investigation after 'killing 1,500 animals' for research

He's come under fire for the experiments

Elon Musk’s neurotechnology company, Neuralink, has been reported to be under investigation after 1,500 animals have been killed for research.

The brain chip company, which was co-founded by Musk and Max Hodak and is said to develop implantable brain-computer interfaces, has reportedly violated animal welfare rules with the technology.

During Neuralink’s recent Show and Tell Fall 2022 convention, the technology firm showed a monkey that was fitted with the brain chip, and was seemingly able to ‘order’ snacks telepathically and move a cursor around on a virtual keyboard.

At the event, Musk claimed that the animals ‘actually enjoy’ taking part in the demonstrations because they are compensated with ‘banana smoothies’.

“They get the banana smoothies, so it’s kind of a fun game,” he rebuked in advance of the claims of animal abuse. “I guess the point I’m trying to make is that we care here about animal welfare.”

But beneath the surface of this clip are claims that animals are needlessly being subjected to suffering and death as a result of the testing.

Elon Musk’s neurotechnology company, Neuralink, has been reported to be under investigation.
Kristoffer Tripplaar / Alamy Stock Photo

As per Reuters, internal staff at Neuralink claim that the animal testing stage of the products is being rushed, with the company having killed around 1,500 animals as a result.

Since 2018 when experiments began, more than 280 sheep, pigs and monkeys have been subjected to the horrific treatment, according to inside sources who reportedly have direct knowledge of the brand’s animal-testing operations.

UNILAD has contacted a representative of Neuralink and Elon Musk for a comment.

The company are hoping to develop a brain implant which can help those with paralysis to walk again, as well as treat other neurological limitations.

However, the US Department of Agriculture’s Inspector General has opened a federal probe on behalf of a prosecutor, as per the sources who are aware of the investigation.

The company has reportedly violated animal welfare rules.
Shari Black Velvet / Alamy Stock Photo

One of the sources claimed that the probe is focusing on violations of the Animal Welfare Act, which oversees how researchers can treat and test some animals in the US.

Since 1985, the act has required investigators in a laboratory to consider alternatives to their studies and consult with a veterinarian before starting an experiment which could cause an animal pain.

They must also adhere to standards set by the Secretary of Agriculture for pre and post-surgical care and the use of pain-relieving drugs or euthanasia and against the use of paralytics without anaesthesia and the unnecessary use of the same animal for more than one major operation.

Since 2008, an amendment to the Animal Welfare Act has been in place which increased fines for violations of the law from $2,500 (£2,044) to $10,000 (£8,177) per violation, per animal, per day.

If you see an animal in distress and/or in need of help, contact the RSPCA's 24-hour animal cruelty line on 0300 1234 999 or visit their website for further advice. In the US, call SPCA on 212-244-SPCA (7722) Monday – Friday 9am-5pm EST or call 9111 if a crime is in progress.

Featured Image Credit: Neuralink/Doug Peters / Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: News, Animal Cruelty, Animals, Elon Musk