AIsymBIO aims to revolutionize not only several scientific fields, but also our society as a whole by fusing biological and artificial neurons into a cohesive entity, marking a new epoch where AI and human intelligence could be combined as a whole.

Giulio Tosato
Tilburg University
Cognitive Science & artificial intelligence

Over het initiatief / About the initiative


In welke fase zit jouw initiatief? / In what stage is your initiative?

Uitgewerkt conceptfase

Heb je jouw initiatief al gevalideerd? / Did you validate your initiative?

Research conducted by independent laboratories has provided partial validation for our project.

Meer informatie over jouw initiatief / More info about your initiative

Our work revolves around the innovative concept of interfacing artificial neurons with their biological counterparts. We are working on demonstrating that these distinct systems can function as a single, unified entity to handle complex tasks. The potential future applications of our project include:

  • Improved understanding of the integration of cultured biological neurons and brain-inspired AI
  • More efficient computations with the biological and artificial neural network hybrid.
  • Offering solutions for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s by compensating for lost biological cells with artificial ones.
  • Developing novel therapeutic approaches and improving neural prosthetics.
  • Empowering humans to keep up with the advances in AI capabilities.
  • Enhancement or cognitive capabilities

Wat is er anders/nieuw aan jouw idee/oplossing t.o.v. bestaande oplossingen? / What is different/new about your idea/solution compared to existing solutions??

  1. A team of European researchers from the University of Southampton, Padova, Zurich, and TU Dresden has managed to connect artificial neurons and biological brain cells without evaluating their combined performance ( Serb et al., 2020 ).
  2. Another team of researchers from the Australian company Cortical Labs has demonstrated the learning capabilities of cultured biological brain cells in a computer game ( Kagan et al., 2022 ).

Our vision took inspiration but goes beyond these endeavors. We propose a novel approach: the integration of brain cells with artificial ones to explore their collaborative potential and their ability to merge into a single network. This pioneering attempt holds great promise, as initial findings indicate its feasibility and potential for success.

In addition, our approach stands out as a novel and innovative alternative to current high-tech companies like Elon Musk’s Neuralink. Neuralink primarily focuses on restoring motor and sensory functions in the body through a straightforward interface that sends motor commands and receives sensory input. In contrast, the ultimate goal of AIsymBIO is to develop an extension of the brain that seamlessly integrates into a unified, fixed network with the brain itself. This groundbreaking method has never been attempted before, mainly due to the fact that advancements in the required technology and theoretical understanding are arising only recently.

Wat zijn jouw volgende stappen om het verder te ontwikkelen? / What are your next steps to develop the initiative?

We are currently engaged in a preliminary pilot study aimed at demonstrating the compatibility of our artificial neurons with the principles governing biological neurons, as defined by the most contemporary theoretical framework. 

Once we achieve satisfactory results with the artificial networks, our next objective is to establish a connection between these two types of networks and evaluate their collective performance. 

The primary project can be divided into four distinct phases:

  1. Format a theoretical framework that facilitates the seamless integration of biological and artificial neural networks.
  2. Applying this theory practically to real biological neurons to determine its expected functionality.
  3. Employing the same theoretical concepts to artificial neurons. 
  4. Experimentally linking both biological and artificial neural networks to evaluate their collaborative performance and capabilities effectively.

The second phase has already been successfully validated by the Australian company ‘Cortical Labs ’ ( Kagan et al., 2022 ). Currently, we are adapting their theoretical model to accommodate STDP learning based artificial neurons, which serve as the foundational elements of our spiking neural networks, also known as the third generation of artificial neural networks. Initial findings show promise, suggesting the feasibility and potential success of our initiative.

Given the highly interdisciplinary nature of this project, we are currently in discussions with two Dutch universities, Radboud and Leiden. This collaboration ensures access to essential resources for our research project.

Wat heb je nodig om (nog meer) impact te maken met dit initiatief? / What do you need to make (more) impact with this initiative?

  1. Talented Individuals

We are looking for bright, open-minded individuals and teams that are eager to embark on this groundbreaking journey. This interdisciplinary project calls for the expertise of individuals across multiple fields, including neuroscience, AI, computer science, biomedical sciences, mathematics, as well as ethical professionals who will play crucial roles in shaping our future responsibly.

  1. Industry Collaboration

We seek to inspire more organizations to venture into this field, as we believe that a collective effort will accelerate progress and lead to more substantial advancements.

  1. Investor Awareness

It’s crucial to highlight the potential of our initiative to investors, showcasing that the integration of AI and human intelligence could be the next transformative wave following the AI revolution.