Reading minds Little is known about Musk’s plans for Neuralink, but it has been registered as a medical research company, which suggests that the first goal will be to break into the neural implant market for neural injuries or degenerative nervous system disorders. Wired compared this presumed plan with Musk’s strategy of building low-cost rockets as a stepping stone toward Mars colonization. Rockets, however, had already been invented before Musk started SpaceX. Neuralink’s researchers won’t have so much to build on. Current neural prosthetics have come a long way, but they still manage only a limited range of motions, said Brad Wyble, a professor of psychology at Pennsylvania State University who studies visual cognition. For someone who has a severed spinal cord from an accident, any mobility is fantastic; for someone able-bodied, the spinal cord is far more advanced, Wyble said. “We already have the peripheral nervous system,” he said. “That’s the gadget you’ve got to beat.” Musk is on the record as complaining that human interactions with devices are inefficient, and it’s true that thumb-typing on a smartphone is not humanity’s most effective use of dexterity. Nevertheless, the spinal cord is like the neural lace of sci-fi writers’ dreams, Wyble said.
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Caruso said the launch late last year of Pfizer Inc.’s Inflectra, a biosimilar of Remicade, has had little impact on sales in the U.S. Doctors there are hesitant to prescribe biosimilars, which are relatively new to the U.S. market, for patients doing well on Remicade. thisThe Tylenol maker’s consumer product sales rose 1 percent to $3.3 billion, while sales of medical devices and diagnostic equipment increased 3 percent to $6.3 billion. “The company performed mediocrely in two key areas pharmaceuticals and consumer products. It managed expenses well, but to continue to increase profits, it has to generate better sales increases,” Erik Gordon, a professor and pharmaceuticals analyst at University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, wrote in an email. J&J reported spending in the quarter rose only a percent or two for manufacturing, marketing, administration and research and development. “We believe J&J has a solid new drug pipeline, which, along with the Actelion acquisition, should support long-term growth,” Edward Jones analyst Ashtyn Evans, who has a “Buy” recommendation on J&J, wrote to investors. But she called the quarterly results “mixed,” with “disappointing” overall growth. Johnson & Johnson said it now expects full-year earnings in the range of $7 to $7.15 per share, up from its January forecast of $6.93 to $7.08 per share.
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