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DNA truth and fiction

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DNA truth and fiction

Post by tigger on 14.11.13 6:22

Starting with Gerry's revolutionary take on individual DNA  as purportedin the interview with Fredrik Skavlan, March 2012. 

Fredrik Skavlan: What happened was that as time went by you didn't really trust the Portuguesian [sic] police and they didn't trust you?

Gerry McCann: We were there for three/three and a half months, we felt we had been completely eliminated from the enquiry, we'd been interviewed... the circumstances, you know, errm... and then, you know, for whatever reason, and possibly pressure, and a desire for this case to go away, it was portrayed in the media that, errr... there was very strong evidence that Madeleine was dead. People see 'DNA' and other things, and that we were responsible for hiding her body and...

Fredrik Skavlan: There were rumours about DNA in the car... in the car that you hired?

Gerry McCann: And we want to be absolutely clear about these things, you know, there's two aspects: we didn't hire that car for 3 and half weeks until after Madeleine was taken, and the second aspect is there's no DNA match. Errr... You know, when you see the files there's a mixed sample of DNA that comes from 5 people and obviously some of it matched Madeleine's. But of course, all, of our DNA matches Madeleine's and... and to be fair, you know, it was incredibly frustrating from the time we were arguido, through to the... the file being closed the following July but the... the Prosecutor's final report was very clear actually, and unequivocal, that, you know, there was no evidence that Madeleine was dead. And there was no evidence that we were involved but certain people have chosen to ignore that information.

Fredrik Skavlan: Which one of these media speculations was... was most shocking, do you think? Was most hurtful?

Kate McCann: I mean, there were loads, I mean, I guess the worst thing is if they say she's dead - and there's no evidence - because if she's dead there's no search, errm... (laughs)
Unquote

It's a little misleading to say the least that mixed  samples of DNA cannot  be separated into the DNA of separate individuals. Coming from a medically trained person, it's even more so. 

The curious answer to the last question -  nothing would prevent the McCanns from searching, that is in their power and that of a willing press.  
.....if she's dead there's no hope ...  Would have been a normal answer. 
Does no search equal no Ltd. Co. with the remit to support the family?
I digressed, back to DNA -  Gerry's answer which I like to call the smarties approach.

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Re: DNA truth and fiction

Post by tigger on 14.11.13 10:11

This is from the Gazetta digital:
 
Tuesday, 5 August 2008

The McCann Case: Why 15 over 19 DNA components isn't enough

As it is front page news at almost every British newspaper, it's interesting to know with more detail what the scientists from Forensic Science Service told Portuguese police, on September 4, 2007, a few days before Gerry and Kate McCann were named "arguidos."

According to a document from FSS, signed by Mr. J.R. Lowe, analysis to the samples collected at the boot of the Renault Scenic produced a complex Low Copy Number DNA result which appeared to have originated from at least three people. Madeleine's DNA profile had 19 elements, each one represented by a peak on a chart, explains Mr. Lowe.
As Madeleine has inherited a same DNA component from both parents, the number of peaks in the chart is 19, instead of 20. Those 2 components appear, in the chart, as only one peak.
The FSS document states that of those 19 components, 15 are present within the result of the analysis to that specific sample. But the total number of components is 37, because there are at least three contributors, may be up to five, in the sample.
Mr. J.R. Lowe's opinion was that the result is too complex to have a meaningful interpretation or conclusion.
But, concerning the question asked, when the samples were sent to FSS – if it could be or not Madeleine's DNA – the FSS scientist admits that it would be very simple to say yes, because of the number of components, within the sample, that are also present in Madeleine DNA profile – 15 over 19.
However, as Mr. J.R. Lowe emphasizes, in the mentioned document, the scientists need to consider if the match is genuine and legitimate. Meaning, to be sure if either Madeleine's DNA was deposited in the car or if the result matched Madeleine's DNA just by chance.
To explain in more detail this question, the FSS scientist reminds that individual components of Madeleine's DNA are also present within the profile of many of the scientists that work in the Birmingham laboratory. Mr. Lowe even refers to his own DNA profile, as an evidence of that.
As the sample analysed has a mixture of elements from more than two persons, it is not possible, according to the FSS expert, to determine or evaluate which specific components pair with each other. Another difficulty mentioned is the fact that it's not possible to separate the components out into three individual DNA profiles.
As a conclusion, Mr. J.R. Lowe wrote that he could not answer the question if the partial match was genuine or just a chance match.
Duarte Levy and Paulo Reis
This I find incomprehensible. All staff at such laboratories have their full DNA profile taken and standard measures are in place to avoid contamination.
Contamination in the end was the reason all the samples were simply ditched. Another unique event in the McCann saga.
The killers of Lawrence were finally arrested and convicted by the DNA evidence saved for around ten years of a microscopic blood spot.
It is standard practice in cases where no definite result is obtained to keep the samples as future scientific advances may well be able to obtain a definite result. As in the case of Lawrence.
Imo, the second report of Lowe is ambiguous and imo he had to give a reason for the samples to be discounted and destroyed. He chose to give a reason that virtually no  scientist would believe. On purpose imo.

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Re: DNA truth and fiction

Post by Okeydokey on 14.11.13 20:52

@tigger wrote:This is from the Gazetta digital:
 

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

The McCann Case: Why 15 over 19 DNA components isn't enough

As it is front page news at almost every British newspaper, it's interesting to know with more detail what the scientists from Forensic Science Service told Portuguese police, on September 4, 2007, a few days before Gerry and Kate McCann were named "arguidos."

According to a document from FSS, signed by Mr. J.R. Lowe, analysis to the samples collected at the boot of the Renault Scenic produced a complex Low Copy Number DNA result which appeared to have originated from at least three people. Madeleine's DNA profile had 19 elements, each one represented by a peak on a chart, explains Mr. Lowe.
As Madeleine has inherited a same DNA component from both parents, the number of peaks in the chart is 19, instead of 20. Those 2 components appear, in the chart, as only one peak.
The FSS document states that of those 19 components, 15 are present within the result of the analysis to that specific sample. But the total number of components is 37, because there are at least three contributors, may be up to five, in the sample.
Mr. J.R. Lowe's opinion was that the result is too complex to have a meaningful interpretation or conclusion.
But, concerning the question asked, when the samples were sent to FSS – if it could be or not Madeleine's DNA – the FSS scientist admits that it would be very simple to say yes, because of the number of components, within the sample, that are also present in Madeleine DNA profile – 15 over 19.
However, as Mr. J.R. Lowe emphasizes, in the mentioned document, the scientists need to consider if the match is genuine and legitimate. Meaning, to be sure if either Madeleine's DNA was deposited in the car or if the result matched Madeleine's DNA just by chance.
To explain in more detail this question, the FSS scientist reminds that individual components of Madeleine's DNA are also present within the profile of many of the scientists that work in the Birmingham laboratory. Mr. Lowe even refers to his own DNA profile, as an evidence of that.
As the sample analysed has a mixture of elements from more than two persons, it is not possible, according to the FSS expert, to determine or evaluate which specific components pair with each other. Another difficulty mentioned is the fact that it's not possible to separate the components out into three individual DNA profiles.
As a conclusion, Mr. J.R. Lowe wrote that he could not answer the question if the partial match was genuine or just a chance match.
Duarte Levy and Paulo Reis
This I find incomprehensible. All staff at such laboratories have their full DNA profile taken and standard measures are in place to avoid contamination.
Contamination in the end was the reason all the samples were simply ditched. Another unique event in the McCann saga.
The killers of Lawrence were finally arrested and convicted by the DNA evidence saved for around ten years of a microscopic blood spot.
It is standard practice in cases where no definite result is obtained to keep the samples as future scientific advances may well be able to obtain a definite result. As in the case of Lawrence.
Imo, the second report of Lowe is ambiguous and imo he had to give a reason for the samples to be discounted and destroyed. He chose to give a reason that virtually no consciencious scientist would believe. On purpose imo.
Tigger,

I am not sure you have interpreted all that correctly. I don't think they were claiming contamination. They were claiming that,  from a statistical point of view, the people in the lab shared some of the individual components.

However, I was never convinced by the statistical argument. It should have been possible to trace back all the hirers and users of the vehicle, even go back to who worked on the vehicle in the factory. As it was likely to be a fairly new vehicle, the number of people who had been been associated with the vehicle might be quite low.  In a year, perhaps such a vehicle will be associated with only perhaps only 50-100 people.  The question then is - if say there are only a few components matching with those people - where did the Madeleine-like DNA material come from?

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Re: DNA truth and fiction

Post by tigger on 15.11.13 7:51

The samples were destroyed because they were contaminated, I take the remark bolded above to refer to such contamination.  It's otherwise a ridiculous excuse, elements of DNA are the same in all individuals, the combination is what gives the rather decisive odds of  one's DNA resembling anyone else's being in the region of  
billions to one. 

In Maddie's case she has 19 instead of twenty peaks as explained above, which I would think is quite common. 
15 allelles  match would probably give odds of millions to one. 

Imo those in charge of the cover up were too late to change the first result of the FSS, the second report had to say something different, which is exactly what happened. 

In the McMinute series of videos there's the one of Brunt stating it was a 100% match, leaked info. Imo.
I can't post the link from Ipad.

They did trace all the previous hirers of the car. There's a list in the car hire topic.

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Re: DNA truth and fiction

Post by Guest on 15.11.13 9:58

@tigger wrote:The samples were destroyed because they were contaminated, I take the remark bolded above to refer to such contamination.  It's otherwise a ridiculous excuse, elements of DNA are the same in all individuals, the combination is what gives the rather decisive odds of  one's DNA resembling anyone else's being in the region of  
billions to one. 

In Maddie's case she has 19 instead of twenty peaks as explained above, which I would think is quite common. 
15 allelles  match would probably give odds of millions to one. 

Imo those in charge of the cover up were too late to change the first result of the FSS, the second report had to say something different, which is exactly what happened. 

In the McMinute series of videos there's the one of Brunt stating it was a 100% match, leaked info. Imo.
I can't post the link from Ipad.

They did trace all the previous hirers of the car. There's a list in the car hire topic.
Is it broadly correct to say that the forensic evidence in the car was more compelling than that from the apartment?
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Martin Brunt and DNA

Post by worriedmum on 15.11.13 10:22

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DNA

Post by AB1 on 17.11.13 4:54

The question to be asked of the DNA result is
Can the DNA of 3 (or 5) other individuals with use of the car/access to the lab be combined to reproduce the same 15 markers of MM's 19 element DNA?
If they can, what is the statistical probability of that being the result as opposed to the statistical probability of it being MM?

I've read elsewhere of the match being either 80% or 88%, but my (bad?) maths make its a 79% match. Presumably this 79% result  was the closest the FSS could get. So why didn't they explore the combination possibilities to create comparables? If no other 'soup' of blended DNA can produce the same 15 strands, then the likelihood of the 79% result being that of MM increases.

So, did they test the counter-argument to their own results?

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