As revealed in an extended Reuters piece on Monday, the company—which bills itself as focusing on “creating the future of brain-computer interfaces”—is under investigation for such violations while also being accused of rushing its animal testing programs.
The animal testing-related accusations, notably, stem from what the publication says are “dozens” of internal documents and interviews with employees. However, the report points out that it is not yet clear whether such allegations (i.e. botched tests spurring a higher number of tested and/or killed animals) are the focus of the federal investigation.
The latter is said to have been launched by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Inspector General, notably, the report adds, following a federal prosecutor’s request for such an inquiry to be initiated.
Complex has reached out to Neuralink, as well as to a rep for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Inspector General, for comment. This story may be updated.
The Animal Welfare Act became law in 1966 and dictates what it lays out as “minimum standards of care and treatment” for animals used in commercial or research settings. In recent years, the law has been frequently cited amid once-ubiquitous updates surrounding Tiger King stars.
For Neuralink, this isn’t the first time that allegations of animal mistreatment or abuse have been made public. Earlier this year, for example, the company was accused of causing “extreme suffering” in its test subjects, many of which were monkeys.