Nigerian neuroscientist Oshiorenoya Agabi builts neuro-computers

Koniku develops computer chips that can smell. Nigerian neuroscientist and Koniku founder Oshiorenoya Agabi have found a way to solve one of the most confusing dilemmas. The Silicon Valley-based startup builds practical applications including sniffing chemicals and volatile explosives at the airport.

Tinuku Nigerian neuroscientist Oshiorenoya Agabi builts neuro-computers

Koniku on Sunday at the TEDGlobal conference in Tanzania announced the world's first neurotechnology device. Agabi uses a futuristic way that can be applied as in the airport security lane where special devices sniff explosives.

The field of Artificial Intelligence (AI) makes it possible to create machines that mimic the brain, but Agabi has found a way to incorporate neurons that grow in the lab with electronic circuits. The 38-year-old said the brain was "the most powerful processor ever created in the universe".

"Instead of copying a neuron, why not just take the biological cell itself and use it as it is? That thought is radical. The consequence of this is mind-boggling," said Agabi.

To simulate the power of every 204 brain neurons would require a supercomputer. Agabi and teams of geneticists, physicists, biotechnologists, molecular biologists and others are making efforts with a focus on problems that are very difficult to do by silicon devices.

Research includes detecting chemicals and volatile explosives or even diseases such as cancer. Agabi says the Koniku Kore device is the first device in the world to smell air first. One of the main challenges is finding ways to keep the neurons alive for two years in a laboratory environment and two months on the device.