Neuralink in Hot Water for Animal Testing

Employees claim missed deadlines, and rushed experiments have led to botched results and unnecessary pain and suffering.

Screen Shot 2022 04 18 At 2 41 24 Pm
Getty Images

Last week, we discussed the latest updates from Neuralink, Elon Musk’s company that creates brain-computer interfaces. Now, according to a recent Reuters article, the company is under federal investigation for violating the Animal Welfare Act. Apparently employees at the company raised concerns that the company’s animal testing is being rushed, causing unnecessary suffering and deaths. Reuters’ investigation looked at dozens of Neuralink documents and interviews with current and former employees. 

The USDA inspector general declined to comment, but regulations don’t specify the number of animals companies can use for research and have loose rules around when and how animals can be used in experiments. That said, Neuralink has killed roughly 1,500 animals since 2018 including sheep, pigs and monkeys. Regulatory filings reveal that the company has passed all USDA facility inspections.