Friday, March 4, 2011

DNA Inconclusive In Search For Amelia Earhart

From CNN:
The fate of famed aviator Amelia Earhart remains a mystery after DNA tests on one of three bone fragments discovered on a Pacific island proved inconclusive.

Cecil M. Lewis Jr. of the University of Oklahoma's Molecular Anthropology Laboratories reported "the question of whether the bone is human must remain unanswered" until new technologies may make a determination possible.

The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) asked Lewis to test the bones found in 2010 on Nikumaroro, formerly Gardner Island. The bone tested by Lewis may be from Earhart's finger, the group says.

Earhart disappeared near the island in 1937 while flying around the world with navigator Fred Noonan. She was later declared dead.

"You learn patience," TIGHAR executive director Ric Gillespie said Wednesday night about the findings. "The door is still open for it to be a human finger bone."

According to Gillespie, a British officer found 13 bones, including a skull, of a likely castaway on the island in 1940 and sent them to Fiji. The officer also reported finding the remains of a woman's shoe and a man's shoe.

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