Melba Ketchum: Sasquatch DNA Project Update

There have been rumors floating around the virtual grapevine that the DNA project was to be published next week.

Melba Ketchum has posted the following updates to address these rumors on her Facebook wall over the last 24 hours.

… There are are a lot of other unsung heroes that will receive their credit at the appropriate times. The effort is not just mine, there are many people involved and I appreciate every single one of them more than anyone knows. I also especially appreciate my peers that trusted me enough to help with this journey of discovery and believe in it enough to risk their outstanding reputations by putting their names on this paper. Their support is priceless.

Also, thanks so very much to all of you for your kind words and support. This makes all of the criticism easier to tolerate. This would not have taken so long but so much was required. What can I say, many scientists are fervent skeptics.

I am so excited about our findings and am anxious myself to get them out into the public. Wish science wasn’t so slow. Everyone is going to be so amazed though at what we have done and at the findings! I know I was. Huge, huge thank you to Wally Hersom, he is such a wonderful person.

While I am giving thanks to the many people responsible for the success of the project, I also want to mention Adrian Erickson because this study would have taken a lot longer if he hadn’t been generous with his funding also. So, without these two generous people (Adrian and Wally) this study would not have been able to be done. I will also tell you that the study is not coming out next Thursday as everyone keeps saying. I do NOT have a date. So that is why I ask you for patience.Melba Ketchum

Info on Wally Hersom.

Info on Adrian Erickson.

About Craig Woolheater
Co-founder of Cryptomundo in 2005. I have appeared in or contributed to the following TV programs, documentaries and films: OLN's Mysterious Encounters: "Caddo Critter", Southern Fried Bigfoot, Travel Channel's Weird Travels: "Bigfoot", History Channel's MonsterQuest: "Swamp Stalker", The Wild Man of the Navidad Destination America's Monsters and Mysteries in America: Texas Terror - Lake Worth Monster.

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  1. I hate to say it, but we’ve just got to be patient. It isn’t easy to get a paper published and with so many scientists being skeptical she has to dot all the I’s and cross all the T’s.

  2. I wish there were some way to help Melba Ketchum understand. The reason there have been “critical comments” is because the presentation of the story is ringing the old “This is a lot of hokum” alarm bells very loudly and very clearly.

    Mysterious hints about what the “results” of the DNA testing are…but no firm date when the results will be released. Just more words.

    Meanwhile one notes that the entire staff of DNA Diagnostics (according to their own website) apparently consists of two people.

  3. “I will also tell you that the study is not coming out next Thursday as everyone keeps saying as everyone keeps saying. I do NOT have a date.”

    (Groaning, pulling my tongue and banging it with a hammer, pulling my hair out, etc.)

    Ok…now I’m better.

    Seriously, though, Dr. Ketchum: keep up with the updates and tell us when the word is out.

  4. I just do NOT believe her. It does not take this long to do a DNA test. Something just does not set well with me about her.

    Not trying to slam anyone but as like hoaxers, a lot of folk just want to get their name in print as I suspect this. This whole thing does NOT smell right. Word has been leaked that it is real close to human, if this is the case, I really suspect her intentions. This thing is NOT human, I’ve seen them. Way too many people have had their own encounters and most of them will tell you that it is NOT human.

    My 2 cents.

  5. I don’t recall how Melba Ketchum talks…..

    But all of these Facebook posts I am now hearing with a Sarah Palin voice.

    Take that for what you will.

  6. Yes, this is ringing those hoax bells pretty consistently, except for one thing…Dr. Ketchum hasn’t disappeared like all the others who splash large, then watch the ripples spread. Keep us informed Dr., I’m ready to bounce off the walls when this get published.

  7. I will say that if Wally Hersom has put money or time into Dr. Ketchum’s project then that might increase the credibility of it. He generally is a pretty good judge of character and evidence. She would have had to have shown him some of her results to get his support.

    She holds the final key in her evidence about whether Justin Smeja is a hoaxer or is on the level. Even if his sample is related to unknown DNA there’s the question of how he obtained the sample and sent it to her. There’s no confirmed chain of custody evidence that is used in legal cases.

    I will wait along with everyone else and continue on. My best,

  8. size13

    “This thing is NOT human, I’ve seen them. Way too many people have had their own encounters and most of them will tell you that it is NOT human.”

    If an alien comes to earth and sees a Chihuahua, and learns from its own its a dog, what is the Alien going to think when it see an British Bulldog, or a Shar Pei, or Great Dane, Old English mastiff, Neopolitan Mastiff, or a Komondor? What will it think when it sees a Pekingese? Just like a person whose studied wolves encounters a Fox or a Coyote and identify them immediately as different species, so would an alien perhaps think immediately that what they sighted are not dogs, but another species of canine. Just because a Chihuahua and a Great Dane are so physically different doesn’t mean they are different species, and perhaps Sasquatch, i it is human, might have some genetic anomalies that, like the Chihuahua/Great Dane Comparison, makes them far different from human-looking, yet still the same species, perhaps a subspecies of modern man.

    However, when someone says that Sasquatch is “Human”, we have to figure out exactly what they are meaning by that. Often when a fossil of a Hominid (Homo Erectus, Heidelbergensis, Neanderthals, etc) are discussed or found, they are called “Human”, when in reality such beings were not of the species Homo Sapiens Sapiens. This might have even been said about Homo Habilis (I don’t know for sure), where “Human” would be used instead of the more accurate Hominid or Hominin. It could be the case that the DNA shows Sasquatch as a Hominid, perhaps related to the Paranthropines, instead of being an automically modern human being. If so, it fits with the theory that Sasquatch is of the Paranthropus lineage (like Paranthropus Boisei, which looks like Bigfoot but is small).

    I just can’t wait for the results. At the same time though, they need to take their time and go through the usual routines of Peer Review.

  9. She will need much more than a paper on bigfoot DNA to prove anything. The body that it came from would be helpfull to the process.

  10. @size 13 – I do not see how you can summarily discount any possibility of Bigfoot creatures (if the exist) as being a type of human, merely due to seeing one. For example, would the creature in the PG film look human if her face was shaved? I have seen a mock drawing of just that scenario and “she” looks like a very male appearing Indian. If Shaquille O’Neil donned a fur coat or suit or suddenly sprouted a beard all over his body, and then ran around in a woods near human residences, would he not be human, yet look like a Bigfoot and be reported as same when seen? Yet, he is still a human. Bottom line is if they exist, they ARE bipedal and though extremely large within the limitations of the largest human beings on the planet (other than possibly weight). I just do not see how anyone can rule out human so easily. Albert Ostman (again if believed) called them a “people” which connotates he thought they were a form of human, not an ape.

  11. In some sense, it really doesn’t matter what the good doctor’s paper or findings say. The fact is, she is using a tissue sample of dubious provenance. If it turns out human, scientists will say it was contaminated. If it turns out “other,” they will say the same thing or that she must have erred.

  12. To people claiming hoax and side show antics, PLEASE, please remember that most of the antics did not come from Ketchum’s side but from a blogger who appears to have a bug up his shorts regarding this project. Don’t blame her or the researchers for something and someone they have no relationship with.

    As for Mandor’s comment about the tissue sample, I will agree if it is only ONE tissue sample, but if they have several genetically similar tissue samples then that multiplies the findings. Particularly so if they can show a genetic tie specifically between samples from the same area (think genealogy)

    Whether or not Bigfoot is human is going to depend a great deal on what you consider human. Consider Chimpanzees share 98+% of their DNA with homo sapiens but are not considered humans I think it would be a huge stretch to lump Bigfoot in as a ‘human’ with what we know/suspect at this time. A close cousin, oh yeh, I could see that, easily see that. But what is human is somewhat open to definition. It isn’t always as simple as genes and physiology and where do we draw the line in sand? Do we include as much as we can or keep it an exclusive club?

  13. @mandors- I see it exactly like you have posted in quotes below, as being the ultimate result of all of this :

    “In some sense, it really doesn’t matter what the good doctor’s paper or findings say. The fact is, she is using a tissue sample of dubious provenance. If it turns out human, scientists will say it was contaminated. If it turns out “other,” they will say the same thing or that she must have erred.”

    Ergo, we will remain back at square one as always has been the case with this mystery.

  14. Paul_r and Mandors:

    Agreed. Without a body, major parts of a body, or a living specimen, the study won’t prove anything. Having said that, the ultimatge value of this research would be to get the scientific community to say “Hmmm…there maybe something too this…expeditions should be called for…”. That alone would be a breakthrough, but yes, without a body or other more proper physical remains, the study will be a bullet missing its target.


  15. I am anxious to see what comes out, if anything, in the end. I don’t know any of the players but I do know the science. Depending on the methods used to extract and amplify and/or sequence or otherwise identify the DNA, contamination issues may be ruled out in many cases. Hopefully the methods (and interim controls and vouchers) are robust enough to support the validity of any results – then it will be an interesting paper, regardless of what it says.

    If, on the other hand, it is nothing more than the typical ‘Baby’s Daddy’ lab-run similarity tests that are hardly more advanced than the RFLP of the late 80′s, it won’t mean much regardless of what the results say.

    Holding out for results, but not holding my breath.

  16. Nice posting from Dr. Ketchum, courteous and pleasant with the ring of truth, everything seems to be on course and disclosure seems to be in the offing. I am grateful to her!

    If a little thought is given the idea of a DNA breakthrough into something new and as an extremely important advance is inescapable. Especially if it is supported by biological material such as skin hair etc of any quality. Especially if there are multiple examples with even basic provenance. The assertions that this will not prove anything, that it doesn’t matter etc etc without an actual body in 2012 has no good arguments in support as it did not for denesovan man. Pessimism is not and argument but an emotion and scepticism in this case is misplaced and long out of date.

    Seems to me we are on the brink of an exciting discovery equaling those of the past such as the ceolacanth and more! Time to enjoy!

  17. remember this about peer-reviewed work:

    the ‘peers’ do not re-do the work, or even validate the results. the ‘peers’ examine what work was done and ensure proper scientific rigor was used in completing, documenting, and submitting the work. the reviewers will have no way to ascertain if these results are correct, they will merely validate that the means used to achieve them appear to be correct and the whatever conclusions are reached can be reasonably achieved using the evidence cited.

    keep in mind also, that rigorously peer-reviewed journals like ‘the lancet’ have fallen victim to research fraud in the past. look no further than the autism-vaccination finding published by dr. andrew wakefield in 1998. these results were finally determined to be A COMPLETE FRAUD and have spurned over a decade of anti-vaccine stupidity.

    fraud is the achilles heel of peer-review. peers can examine the rigor with which the findings are presented, but never the data used to determine them.

  18. Norman-UK:

    “The assertions that this will not prove anything, that it doesn’t matter etc etc without an actual body in 2012 has no good arguments in support as it did not for Denisovan man.”

    Denisovan man is based on a finger bone, tooth and toe bone that were found and (the finger bone and tooth) subsequently tested for DNA. Bones and teeth are something that, far as I know, have not been discovered and labeled so by science when it comes to Bigfoot (though the Erickson Project might have snagged some). Bones are a far different thing from skin and hair when it comes to proving to the scientific community that Sasquatch is real. No method known of documenting new species is known apart from major physical remains (however, DNA documentation for subspecies and already known species living in areas where they were thought to be long extinct (i.e. the “New Zealand Moose”), but it is not yet for totally new species). Though a few finger bones might not seem a lot, they weigh more than all the Bigfoot track casts in the entire globe in terms of scientific credibility. DNA from hair and skin would not have led to discovery of the Denisovans: DNA from bones (and a site with archeological artifacts associated with non-human Hominins) did so.

    See more here.

  19. slappy

    Of course peer review is not perfect it much depends on the people who do it, sometimes they are sort of clones of the author where independence of thought is needed. Either to trim the report or refute it. But it seems like a useful tool giving international if not infallible credibility. It can be wrong both in being for or against. I think the latter has been more likely regarding bigfoot for many years but now the tide is turning, but either way it is not the final word.

    Incidentally, I understood Dr. Wakefield’s work was to try to explain medical problems being suffered by children including a huge increase in autism in terms of the MMR vaccine. He was eventually condemned because he was regarded as using unethical methods. I am unaware of the grounds being fraudulent. The huge increase in autism has still not been explained.

  20. Hapa

    I think historically new species have been identified in the past by very little such as a drawing or a photo. etc. No bag of bones or body or skull etc. needed. The denesova bits of bone meant very little until along came the DNA tests which meant everything and allowed Svante Sabo to propose a new species from sophisticated multiple tests and interpretations initially from the finger bone then the other bits. Until that point they were just bits of bone subsequently being linked with a tooth found much early and not identified. If you can appreciate the richness of information available now and in the future with the potential for whole body details hidden in the fully documented DNA of denesovan man you will appreciate how important and crucial it was in giving denesovan man an ID! It was not the bones that did it!

    With Bigfoot there is a gigantic body of information giving a context and a matrix a which denesovan man does not have-unless it is one of the relic hominoids? If DNA is now discovered sourced from the many putative bigfoot samples then this would be wonderful and tremendously important as was the denesovan mans DNA. and it could and should do the same for bigfoot as was done for denesovan man. I am sure many more physical samples are available from bigfoot remains like skin and hair and teeth and bones and these could add to the evidence when identified by DNA

    Anyway why shouldn’t skin for example be as good as bits of bone in helping identify bigfoot. You state the ‘bigfoot community’ wont accept anything less than a body, certainly some will not but a lot will! Clearly the ‘bigfoot community had to accept the evidence for denesovan man as they must when the DNA results come through and they are marshaled along with the vast body of evidence already available. It would be perverse to do anything else

  21. Norma-Uk:

    I cannot think of one instance where a new species was accepted by science based on a photograph or a track. Can’t think of one accepted by science based on Skin and hair either (Though “Skin and Hair” should be clarified: a pelt, a large amount of skin and hair, would indeed suffice. There is I believe a reward for the full hide of a super anaconda, for example, and the Saola was originally proven based on a pelt. But miniscule amounts of hair, skin, especially for something as controversial as Sasquatch, will not cut the mustard, no matter how good the DNA.). Jeff Meldrum has also stated that he knows no known process of accepting a new species based on DNA alone.

    Now when it comes to Bones: Yes, a pelt would be as valuable as bones, but bones will outweigh any miniscule amount of skin or hair. And remember: without the bones discovered of the Denisovans, there would be no DNA available to prove their existence. I’m not even sure they would have accepted the Denisovans as a new species of Hominin if they got the DNA from tiny traces of skin tissue or remnants of blood (possibly, but You never know: Scientists will drag their feet. And Bigfoot is far harder for TPTB to accept than a New Species of Asian Hominid).

    True, DNA have made species identification better, sharper, but for Sasquatch and other cryptids, without physical remains to back them up, any DNA result is ignored. Jeff Meldrum has hairs on physical display somewhere that have turned up unusual DNA that cannot be pinned down. There was even supposed Yeti DNA that was found in Asia that was likewise unidentifiable. Neither of these led to Science saying “I give I give!”

    And for the Bigfoot community comments: Forgive my vagueness: I meant the usual scientific community, i.e. the usual suspects, if you will. They are the target audience one must prove Sasquatch to. They are the ones whose opinion matters in terms of Taxonomy. And they will not take anomalous DNA, no matter how advanced such DNA research is now: they will only take a body, major parts of a body, or a live specimen. Mr. Coleman will tell you that, Michael Shermer will tell you that, Jeff Meldrum will tell you that. TPTB will keep nodding their heads no, putting their fingers in their ears, singing “Koombayah, My Lord, Koombayah!” and dancing in wooden cloggers, until they are slapped in the face with the proper physical evidence.

  22. Norman-UK:

    Here are some quotes from Meldrum’s book about the need of physical proof beyond DNA;

    “For this to be a real science you’ve got to have a body. That’s the way it works.”
    Sasquatch, Legend meets Science, page 273, quoting Michael Shermer (though a famous debunker, see what Meldrum says right afterwards on the same page (see below).

    “I should reiterate my acknowledgement that the conventions of zoological taxonomy require a type specimen to establish the existence of a new species. On this point Shermer is in principle quite correct.”

    “Cleary the question of Sasquatch’s existence is unlikely to be resolved conclusively without physical evidence. The conventions of zoological Taxonomy require a type specimen, traditionally in the form of a body or a sufficiently diagnostic physical body part, to decisively establish the existence of a new species. Whether DNA alone will ultimately satisfy that standard remains to be seen. I am doubtful. I am not aware of a precedent for determining a new species on the basis of DNA evidence, in the absence of a physical specimen. Subpopulations of recognized species have been differentiated based on DNA sequence differences and been given species status, but those subpopulations were previously known and sampled.”
    ilbid, pages 269-270

    Notice he is a bit open minded like you are about a possible change in taxonomic standards, but he is doubtful. He goes on to state that DNA evidence is a major target short of a body or significant part of one.

    “While an indeterminate identification of an alleged “Sasquatch hair” is interpreted by some as indication of an unknown animal, it is more conservatively regarded by others as the lack of a comprehensive collection of hair samples from known species of animals with which to compare the strand in question. Indeed this would be the only reasonable outcome for hair that might in fact have come from a Sasquatch. Al that could be concluded is what species the hair did not appear to belong to. Conclusive identification depends on a match to a known sample of hair , i.e., an established standard. Without a confirmed sample of Sasquatch hair, any hair truly originating from a Sasquatch would necessarily languish in the indeterminate category. Such a standard is unlikely to be acknowledged until hair is pulled directly from a Sasquatch body by a qualified analyst.”
    Ilbid, pages 261-262

    Now if it were up to me, the fact that there are indeterminate hairs found of unknown species would get me on the ball to dig further, to see if there is some unknown species of animal from where the hair was found (anything from an unknown primate to a new species of squirrel, depending on what the DNA revealed about the owner of that hair). But I am not a scientist, and TPTB (the powers that be) in Science will continue to grow fat and lazy until proper evidence is rubbed in their face and shoved down their throat! Sorry, but I get irritated at the pseudo-skepticism of some scientists.

    This is why a body, major part of a body, or a live specimen is needed. The Erickson Project, if it has access to at least major body parts, has already won the battle (pending if the remains prove legit). DNA will be icing on the cake, but it is just the icing.

  23. Somebody step on this.

    Scientists doing real science simply don’t do all this advance crowing. Another thing: they understand that you can’t have a positive DNA result for a species for which no type specimen exists.

    But, since we want to have some serious discussion on this site, let’s talk about those human! not human! posts up there.

    We don’t know precisely what the sasquatch is. We can’t; we don’t have a type specimen. Primate seems reasonable. So does ape. The evidence allows intelligent speculation along those lines. But facts follow the type specimen.

    I do think the evidence allows this intelligent speculation: if this sucker’s real, it ain’t Homo sapiens.

    But that doesn’t mean that “human” can be ruled out utterly. Nor can a new branch of the primate tree, something that isn’t ape nor human. That sort of thing is routine in zoology.

    We consider a number of fossil primates in the human lineage that, if someone saw one today, the sighting would wind up on a bigfoot database. (If the sighter ever talked, of course.) If and when this animal – these animals; who knows how many species we may eventually decide there are? – is confirmed, we may see the entire primate fossil record in a new light.

    Betting, though, that this is a dead end. History simply suggests that.

  24. Hapa

    Whatever Dr Meldrum wrote in 2007, in 2010 the denesovan was identified by the DNA from a shard of bone then from a tooth. I wouldn’t think these items would constitute a body or sufficiently diagnostic body part in the traditional sense but in the light of modern understanding and availabilty of DNA a pragmatic position has been taken. Thus (I haven’t checked) there should be a unique entry in Genbank for denesovan man.

    Consequently, in my opinion a similar niche should be utilised for relic hominoids should we get reliable DNA results. In the case of Sasquatch there would be a huge evidential matrix plus doubtless physical evidence even if this may fall short of the ideal, which would be the body of a sasquatch in good condition which has died from natural causes having lead a life fulfilling its potential.

    If scientists continue to demand a body they are authorising harm to Sasquatch on a massive scale with the certainty of much wounding and killing without even possibly getting their type specimen. They should establish a type specimen from what material they have like hair and bones linked by DNA. The type specimen subject to improvement over time from additional material.

    This can and should be done!

    I am interested in the S island NZ moose which is surprisingly rare though apparently present and which has been confirmed from DNA. If it was not a moose and something new it would in my opinion be another case where it could be recognized from the DNA even with the source of the DNA being its dung!

  25. Norman-UK

    The DNA was identified from a finger bone and a tooth, not a bone shard. And it was bone, not a hair or a tiny piece of skin. True, DNA has made certain physical remains more significant than in the past (these bones wouldn’t make much news without the DNA with them), but it still outweighs anomalous hairs, teeny-tiny pieces of flesh, and tracks and eyewitness testimony.

    However, let’s say we find a finger bone and or a tooth of a large primate in north America, a fossil, or an ancient bone not fossilized yet ancient (ice age, 12,000 BC). Would this prove Sasquatch to the scientific community? Well they might be more inclined to think that at least a giant ape is the source of the Sasquatch story, but they might very well conclude that it died out at the end of the ice age like the Giant Short Faced Bear (which would eat Sasquatch for a midnight snack), Scimitar toothed cat and the Mastodon (the latter two were found in forested environments, and likewise their ranges included the Pacific Northwest and Florida, two major Sasquatch hotspots). But they could still wiggle their way out of the discovery by saying:

    A. there is no evidence that it walked upright (only finger bone and or tooth found)
    B. Since we do not have a body or major parts of one in modern times, its not behind the current Bigfoot phenomena: those are hoaxes and misidentifications!

    The only way to counter that would be to then compare the DNA of the bones or teeth (if they indeed have DNA: if not, the following trick would be moot) with that of anomalous hairs and other physical remains. That would be significant. But to say that science should accept a new species of such controversy and long history of hoaxing based on DNA and insignificant remains (Hair and tiny skin pieces, or poo) is not going to happen.

    However, if a finger bone or a tooth of a large unknown primate is found, and especially if the DNA found with the remains (if it has it) is also unknown, and the remains are fresh…then we would have proper evidence to convince scientists that we mean business. Heck if the tooth or finger bone prove identical or nearly so to ancient species (Gigantopithecus Blacki) then that alone would shoot down the skeptics. But there is still bones and teeth in our hypothetical scenario, not insignificant physical remains.

    Don’t worry about a massive killing effort to bag a Sasquatch: most people when seeing such a beast do not shoot, and for good reason: what if its a man in a suit? What if its a protected species, like a Grizzly? Though I feel one of the best way to prove Sasquatch is by shooting one, most people won’t take that bait.

    If you do not want to kill a Sasquatch yet want to prove its existence, you need to snag one alive: tranq it. However, it would most likely be subjected to life in captivity. Or you can find one dead, which would need either luck or divine intervention to happen.

    But science is not all lovey dovey. Science involves harming animals on a daily basis, and if one has to die in order to be discovered, then so be it. No matter how you or I or anyone feels, TPTB will not change the requirement of a type specimen in order to add a new species.

    This has been the litmus test Science has demanded of Bigfoot researchers and other cryptozoologists. Those that do not make the effort to do so are not doing real science.

  26. Hapa

    OK the DNA source was a tiny bit of bone presumably the top joint of a small child’s small finger, though it is described differently in different places and there doesn’t seem to be a picture on line though casts were taken. DNA was also taken from a tooth. These two specimens meant very little without the DNA analysis and currently there are other anomalous bits of bone of different sorts from the general area. Without Dna these also mean very little and at present they remain interesting but unimportant. Now if DNA is found and analysed from any of these there might be more transformations in their interest and importance. There seems to be huge potential from this area for further discoveries which might include some of the ‘relic hominoids’ of cryptozoological interest. These DNA results are what have enabled scientists to identify denisovan man and initiated the growth in science in this area and linking matters.

    The ‘type specimen’ for denisovan man is minimal and in fact apparently it still not decided fully where denisovan man belongs . But whatever it is it is clear that the DNA is of fundamental importance and the basis for more and more knowledge to be gained.

    If there is a similar position with bigfoot, though I suspect there will be much more in the way of a type specimen than the not much more than a tokens as with Denisovan man. Useful nonetheless as a focus for starters. By means of DNA, validation should be given to many bits and pieces which are thought to belong to bigfoot from old and new sources including hair. These should at some point provide overwhelming probability that bigfoot is real even without easy access to bigfoot and directly getting specimens.

    I don’t think we should portray science and scientists as sitting on thrones in the halls of academia passing judgement on the work of lessor beings and never being satisfied with what pearls of knowledge are laid before them somehow being aloof from the process. What we should expect is scientists to say Oh my god there is clearly a real and wonderful phenomenon here and we better rush out and find out what it is before it’s too late! History will think we are amazingly delinquent if we do not.

    This process seems to be happening at last and I am optimistic that the science will move on and produce something extraordinary. So value that strange DNA while you have the chance and what a chance!

  27. Norman-UK:

    We will have to agree to disagree on a lot of things we talked about here. Having said that, you made some good points, particularly with the comparative DNA findings from multiple physical samples (if the DNA found in many of those examples are of the same species, that can indeed be a big help, hence the Ketchum DNA project).

  28. Stop telling me the cake is almost done. Tell me when I can have a piece. I’ll tell you how good it is then.