Billionaire Elon Musk’s brain chip startup Neuralink has raised $280 million in a funding round led by Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund.

“We’re happy to announce our $280M Series D round led by Founders Fund. We’re extremely excited about this next chapter at Neuralink,” the company said in a post on Musk-owned social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

The news comes after the company secured FDA’s approval to launch its first in-human clinical trial in May.

Neuralink did not reveal the valuation at which the funds were raised. In June, Reuters reported that the company was valued at about $5 billion after privately executed stock trades.

Founders Fund is a venture capital firm investing in smart people solving difficult problems, the VC firm said in its Linkedin page. The firm invests across all stages, sectors and geographies. Its partners have founded and funded companies including PayPal, Palantir, SpaceX, Anduril, Flexport, Airbnb and Stripe.

Neuralink employees told Reuters last year the company was rushing and botching surgeries on monkeys, pigs and sheep, resulting in more animal deaths than necessary, as Musk pressured staff to receive FDA approval.

The animal experiments produced data intended to support the company’s application for human trials, the sources were quoted as saying.

In May, US lawmakers urged regulators to investigate whether the makeup of a panel overseeing animal testing at Neuralink contributed to botched and rushed experiments after Reuters reported on potential financial conflicts on the panel, according to Reuters‘ report.

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