Ketchum Sasquatch DNA Study Published!

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on February 13th, 2013

Last night, Melba Ketchum posted the following on her facebook page:

BUCKLE UP!!!!!!!!!!Melba Ketchum


It is not how it seems. There will be a statement in the morning explaining why it is the first paper. I had NOTHING to do with the peer review and it was blind (I was not told who they were) as it is supposed to be and we did pass. The reviewers were geneticists with next gen whole genome experience. That was all I was told by the editor.Melba Ketchum

Here is the synopsis:


New Research Paper Published Friday Shows Homo Sapiens/Unknown Hominin Hybrid Species Extant in North America
DALLAS, February 10th

A team of scientists will publish their five-year long study of DNA samples from a novel hominin species, commonly known as “Bigfoot” or “Sasquatch,” on Friday February 15th, 2013. The results suggest that the legendary Sasquatch is extant in North America and is a human relative that arose approximately 13,000 years ago as a hybrid cross of modern Homo sapiens with an novel primate species.

The study, “Novel North American Hominins, Next Generation Sequencing of Three Whole Genomes and Associated Studies,” was conducted by a team of experts in genetics, forensics, imaging and pathology. The team, led by Dr. Melba Ketchum of DNA Diagnostics in Nacogdoches, TX, included Dr. Pat Wojtkiecicz, Director of the North Louisiana Criminalistics Laboratory; Ms. Aliece Watts of Integrated Forensic Laboratories in Euless, TX; Mr. David Spence, Trace Evidence Supervisor at Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences; Dr. Andreas K. Holzenburg, Director of the Microscopy & Imaging Center at Texas A&M University; Dr. Douglas G. Toler of Huguley Pathology Consultants in Fort Worth, TX; Dr. Thomas M. Prychitko of Wayne State University in Michigan; Dr. Fan Zhang of the University of North Texas Health Science Center; and Sarah Bollinger, Ray Shoulders, and Ryan Smith of DNA Diagnostics.

In total, 110 specimens of purported Sasquatch hair, blood, skin, and other tissue types were analyzed for the study. Samples were submitted by individuals and groups at 34 different hominin research sites in 14 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces. Ketchum’s team sequenced 20 whole and 10 partial mitochondrial genomes, as well as 3 whole nuclear genomes, from the samples.

Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) comes from mitochondria, energy-producing organelles in the cellular cytoplasm, and is passed down on the maternal lineage across generations. Nuclear DNA (nuDNA) is the genetic information contained in the cell nucleus and is the equal combination of DNA from the parents of an individual.

Initially a skeptic, Ketchum implemented strict protocols to ensure the scientific integrity of the study. DNA samples from submitters and scientists working with study specimens were obtained for use as controls. DNA was extracted from samples using forensic procedures to prevent contamination. Forensics experts examined the morphology of the submitted hair samples against known human and animal samples before beginning DNA testing. “We soon discovered that certain hair samples–which we would later identify as purported Sasquatch samples–had unique morphology distinguishing them from typical human and animal samples,” says Ketchum. “Those hair samples that could not be identified as known animal or human were subsequently screened using DNA testing, beginning with sequencing of mitochondrial DNA followed by sequencing nuclear DNA to determine where these individuals fit in the ‘tree of life.’”

After extensive forensic controls to prevent contamination, mtDNA testing of the Sasquatch samples yielded fully modern human profiles. Sixteen haplotypes indicating 100% homology with modern human mtDNA sequences were observed from 20 completed whole and 10 partial mitochondrial genomes. The human mtDNA results are consistent with prior, unrelated mtDNA tests of purported Sasquatch samples from other laboratories.

Next-generation whole genome sequencing with the HiSeq 2000 platform by Illumina was performed at the University of Texas, Southwestern on one tissue sample, a saliva sample and one blood sample to produce 3 whole genomes. In contrast to the mtDNA which was unambiguously modern human, the Sasquatch nuDNA results were a mosaic of novel primate and human sequence.

“While the three Sasquatch nuclear genomes aligned well with one another and showed significant homology to human chromosome 11 which is highly conserved in primates, the Sasquatch genomes were novel and fell well outside of known ancient hominin as well as ape sequences,” explains Ketchum. “Because some of the mtDNA haplogroups found in our Sasquatch samples originated as late as 13,000 years ago, we are hypothesizing that the Sasquatch are human hybrids, the result of males of an unknown hominin species crossing with female Homo sapiens.”

Hominins are members of the taxonomic grouping Hominini, which includes all members of the genus Homo.

“Novel North American Hominins, Next Generation Sequencing of Three Whole Genomes and Associated Studies.”

Authors: Ketchum MS, Wojtkiewicz PW, Watts AB, Spence DW, Holzenburg AK, Toler DG, Prychitko TM, Zhang F, Bollinger S, Shoulders R, Smith R

Journal of Advanced Multidisciplinary Exploration in Zoology. 11 January 2013.

Specimens yielding DNA were obtained, purportedly from elusive hominins in North America


Researchers Sequence Sasquatch Genome, Novel Hominins Extant in North America

Next-Generation Whole Genome Sequencing Proves Extant Human Relative, Findings Published in Denovo Journal of Science

(PRWEB) February 13, 2013

A team of eleven scientists with expertise in genetics, forensics, pathology, biochemistry, and biophysics has sequenced three whole nuclear genomes from a novel, contemporary species of hominin in North America. The study, “Novel North American Hominins, Next Generation Sequencing of Three Whole Genomes and Associated Studies,” which analyzed DNA from a total of 111 high-quality samples submitted from across the continent, appears in the inaugural issue of Denovo: Journal of Science ( on February 13.

The team, led by Dr. Melba S. Ketchum, DVM, of DNA Diagnostics in Nacogdoches, TX, sequenced the three whole nuclear genomes using the next-generation Illumina HiSeq 2000 platform at University of Texas, Southwestern from a tissue sample, a saliva sample, and a blood sample. The three genomes all attained Q30 quality scores above 88 on the Illumina platform, significantly higher than the platform average of 85, indicating highly-purified, single-source DNA with no contamination for each sample. The three Sasquatch genomes align well with one-another and show substantial homology to primate sequences.

In addition to the three nuclear genomes, Ketchum’s team also sequenced 20 whole and 10 partial mitochondrial genomes from the Sasquatch samples. In contrast to the nuDNA results, the Sasquatch mtDNA was fully modern Homo sapiens, indicating that the species is a hybrid cross between modern Homo sapiens in the maternal lineage and an unknown hominin male progenitor.


“Novel North American Hominins, Next Generation Sequencing of Three Whole Genomes and Associated Studies.”
Authors: Ketchum MS, Wojtkiewicz PW, Watts AB, Spence DW, Holzenburg AK, Toler DG, Prychitko TM, Zhang F, Bollinger S, Shoulders R, Smith R.
DeNovo. 13 February 2013.

Specimens yielding DNA were obtained, purportedly from elusive hominins in North America called Sasquatch. Sequencing and genotyping were performed in addition to histopathologic and electron microscopic examination of a large tissue sample.

Mitochondrial whole genomes were consistent with modern humans. In contrast, novel data were obtained when nuclear DNA was sequenced. Next generation whole genome sequencing was performed on three samples. Phylogeny trees generated showed homology to human chromosome 11 and to primate sequences. The data indicates that the Sasquatch has human mitochondrial DNA but possesses nuclear DNA that is a structural mosaic consisting of human and novel non-human DNA.


Correspondence should be directed to M.S. Ketchum (

Reporters may log-in to the Press Room at to view the embargoed manuscript.



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, Animal Planet's Finding Bigfoot: Return to Boggy Creek and Beast of the Bayou.

19 Responses to “Ketchum Sasquatch DNA Study Published!”

  1. PoeticsOfBigfoot responds:

    Ketchum’s probably posing for her new Glamour Shot right now.

  2. Jonathan Poulsen responds:

    Well, I’d say it’s about time! Although initially I didn’t have high hopes for this report, its much more “convincing” than I originally anticipated. The only thing I feel I can complain about is their view that the Sasquatch is a human species.

  3. Jonathan Poulsen responds:

    But then again, if they somehow manage to “prove” that the Sasquatch is human via DNA, I wont have too much of a problem with it. Its just the unfounded beliefs that grind my gears. Maybe it’s human, maybe it’s an ape, but we’ll never know for sure until their existence is proven (which will likely not be achieved by DNA research).

  4. MR JOSHUA responds:

    She published this paper herself in a journal she created for herself. The journal has “zero” credibility. “Buckle up” is right Melba….for the car wreck that is your career !!! Scam Artist at large.

  5. Millie Fischer via Facebook responds:

    Hmmm…. interesting. I wonder whether there really is anything Bigfoot in that DNA.

  6. marcodufour responds:

    Something weird with the journal it seems? It won’t be believed until a live specimen or a dead body or significant part are found.

  7. semillama responds:

    Does anyone else find it odd that it is published in a journal that didn’t exist prior to this paper? Who’s behind DeNovo?

  8. odingirl responds:

    Take a look at the facts behind this ‘journal’ over at Doubtful News. She has purchased the rights to this new ‘journal’ herself and everything has apparently been put in place in just the last 10 days or so. She has also followed this up with a website dedicated to the ‘protection’ of a species that remains unconfirmed and in the meantime, there is still no confirmation of a truly ‘peer-reviewed’ paper (conveniently explained away simply a part of the peer-review process). It has all of the earmarks of a well-orchestrated fraud.

    I’ll give her credit for knowing how to PT Barnum (and play the victim).

  9. cryptokellie responds:

    As I have posted before on this issue…I have a big problem with the “evidence perportingly obtained from elusive homonins”. It occurs to me that if this “evidence” was actually and conclusively collected from an actual Bigfoot, would not some real corroborative evidence be included with the samples; clear photos, video and audio and so forth? Just how was the “large tissue sample” obtained?

    Without adjoining proof of the validity of the samples actually being from a Bigfoot, the DNA sequencing and results are in fact very clouded if not worthless, as to proof of Bigfoot existence. Please note that in no way am I saying anything discouraging about Ms. Ketchum or her methods or findings for that matter.

    But seriously, mostly human with a dash of non-human…that could mean anything. The samples being from anywhere and from possibly from anything could mean that humans are out in the wild and some of them might be playing with some type of non-human material. How can a large tissue sample (steak?) be valid and not have any accompanying documentation proving the sample is from a Bigfoot and therefore proving the existence of same?

    If these samples include some corroborating documentation, let’s hear about and see it because the the question of existence would be solved…once and for all.

  10. simianfever responds:

    I would have found it more “odd” if it had been published in a respectable journal. This makes sense.

  11. asecretcountry responds:

    Ketchum..the sceptics secret weapon that keeps on giving.
    All her supporters are going to be eating more than humble pie it seems..and the video that was going to be released..dear god.

  12. squatchman responds:

    How can people believe Ketchum’s story which is full of baloney. I am a sasquatch believer, but this is absolutely stupid. It’s because of people like Ketchum that the sasquatch is rejected by many people.

  13. Jeremy Shea via Facebook responds:

    This is a brand new website with no history of actual publications. I can find no record of this being a real “Journal” or any past issues or papers they have published. She has just created this as a way to fool the naive into thinking she has been accepted by a real peer reviewed journal.

    Registered through:, LLC Domain Name: DENOVOJOURNAL.COM Created on: 04-Feb-13 Expires on: 04-Feb-14 Last Updated on: 04-Feb-13

  14. dconstrukt responds:

    just curious …why you guys are hating on her/this report?

    is it the evidence itself?

    or the way its being presented?

    I think its all fascinating… however she leaves the door open for skeptics and haters because of the way certain things are done. (the journal/site etc)

  15. odingirl responds:

    dconstrukt, as I’ve mentioned on another post about this, I am neither a skeptic nor a hater. I appreciate good science and all of the hard work that goes into supporting or disproving a hypothesis and rigorous peer review. I work in an environment of evidence-based science and I’m aware of the high standards that researchers are held to. Not being a scientist myself, I rely on the opinion of experts in the field – such as the gentleman who has read Melba’s paper and was quoted on Doubtful News describing the DNA samples as “a mess”.

    Is it the ‘evidence’? Yes, although at this point it’s the evidence we still don’t seem to have that’s more telling.

    The way it’s being presented? Absolutely. I know of no credible researcher who spends so much time on social media posting cryptic (pardon the pun) messages, self justification and bad video…this has hardly served Melba well.

    Too many inconsistencies, delays, deflections, and excuses, not to mention the apparent lack of meaningful evidence (I say apparent because Ketchum’s paper remains largely out of the reach of most of us at this point, which is odd for such a presumeably groundbreaking discovery).

    Penn and Teller must be chuckling their arses off right at the moment.

  16. Waya responds:

    I haven’t been able to read all the comments (I will read them later after my class tonight.) So I don’t know if anyone else has posted this or not. I found the article above and it seems that Ketchum has gained the rights to a journal and then renamed it. I guess it was the only way she could get published.

  17. asecretcountry responds:

    dconstrukt responds:
    February 14th, 2013 at 9:34 am
    just curious …why you guys are hating on her/this report?
    is it the evidence itself?
    or the way its being presented?
    I think its all fascinating… however she leaves the door open for skeptics and haters because of the way certain things are done. (the journal/site etc)

    Simple..we can read and think.
    Its the “evidence” and the hype/presentation…and that awful video.
    The new vernacular here is…
    hater = common sense.
    And the inverse of that would be for the gullible supporters of ketchum would be = face palm and running for cover. 🙂

  18. dconstrukt responds:

    ya, i tend to agree with you guys, thats why i posted the question.

    to me, there’s TOO MANY red flags here to take seriously right now.

  19. stevedlocke responds:

    Registrar: GODADDY.COM, LLC
    Creation Date: 04-feb-2013

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