Posted by: Nick Redfern on July 13th, 2012
Jon Downes of the Center for Fortean Zoology tells us:
“I had a long discussion with Lars Thomas earlier today. He has more news on the analysis of the hair samples brought back from Sumatra at the end of last year. They were split into several different groups, and although we have not heard yet from either Dr Todd Disotell in New York, or Professor Brian Sykes in Cambridge, we can now reveal that although the hair does appear to be primate, the Danish team were unable to sequence enough fragments of DNA to tell whether it is monkey, gibbon, orang utan or even human, let alone orang pendek. The hairs were just too badly degraded, and in Lars’ opinion there was nothing else that could be done with the samples that he was given. Let’s hope that the other two teams have better luck.
“In a related piece of news, Lars has been working on a scat sample preserved in alcohol sent to us by one of Richard’s Ukrainian colleague from the 2008 Russian expedition.
“Unfortunately, the DNA laboratories have closed for the summer and therefore attempts at DNA sequencing have not been done. However, Lars has extracted a number of hairs from the faecal mass, and we are able to confirm that they are from small rodents. Whatever produced the scat had been feeding on mice and other small mammals of that ilk. We will keep you informed of developments as we get them.”