8:57 AM, Nov 27, 2012
The whole Sasquatch thing may be moving from the realm of the weird to the level of “truth is stranger than fiction.”
That will depend on how mainstream science responds to the impending release of a five-year DNA study apparently suggesting Sasquatch exists, and is not entirely human and not entirely non-human. It is, says the study’s author, a hybrid cross of the two.
The research was done by a team led by Melba Ketchum, a former veterinarian who moved into genetic research 27 years ago and runs DNA Diagnostics, Inc., based in Texas. Ketchum had hoped to see the results announced in a peer-reviewed scientific journal but they were “outed” last Friday by a note on the website of the Russia-based International Center of Hominology.
The center’s director, listed on the site as Dr. Igor Burtsev, wrote that Ketchum’s findings prove Sasquatch or Bigfoot “is human like us only different, a hybrid of a human with unknown species.”
Reached on telephone Monday, Ketchum said the 50-page manuscript containing the research and DNA findings is still in peer review at a scientific journal. As for whether the premature announcement would impact that, she said, “I hope not. So far we haven’t heard anything that says it’s going to stop it.” As for when the study might become public, she said, “in weeks instead of many months, that’s for sure.”
Ketchum said the study had sequenced “three complete Sasquatch nuclear genomes” and determined the species is a human hybrid — “the result of males of an unknown hominin species crossing with female Homo sapiens.”
Sasquatch nuclear DNA, Ketchum said, “is incredibly novel and not at all what we had expected. While it has human nuclear DNA within its genome, there are also distinctly non-human, non-archaic hominin (member of the genus Homo, including Homo sapiens), and non-ape sequences. We describe it as a mosaic of human and novel non-human sequence.”
What does that mean in non-scientific terms? David Paulides of North America Bigfoot Research, one of several private groups and individuals that financed the DNA study, said the research makes one thing clear: Sasquatch isn’t nonexistent and it isn’t an ape. It’s human. Or, at least, partly human.