Federal Defendants' Submission of Work Plan for DNA Analysis
Lois J. Schiffer
FOR THE DISTRICT OF OREGON
ROBSON BONNICHES, et al., Plaintiffs
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, et al., Defendants
Federal Defendants' Submission of Work Plan for DNA Analysis
A. Schedule For Completing DNA Analysis
Pursuant to the Court's Order of March 8, 2000, the federal defendants hereby provide a work plan for completing the DNA analysis. See Declaration of Dr. Francis McManamon, April 10, 20000 (Exhibit 1, Attachment 1). The full details of the DNA analysis are set forth in the attached plan. Below is a short synopsis of the tasks that will be undertaken, the schedule for completion, and the experts selected.
1. Micro-sampling and physical anthropological anlysis, April 24-28, 2000. The scientific team will include Dr. Francis McManamon, Chief Archeologist, National Park Service, Dr. R. E. Taylor, U. C. Riverside, an expert in radiometric dating and bone structure and chemistry; and Dr. David Glenn Smith, U. C. Davis, an expert in anthropological genetics and DNA analysis. Three expert physical anthropologists also will be members of the team: Dr. Joseph Powell of the University of New Mexico, who has examined and measured many of the existing ancient skeletons from North American and was a member of the team that examined the remains in February, 1999, and reported on them; Dr. Clark Larsen of the University of North Carolina, president of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists and an expert on interpreting lifeways from skeletal examination; and Dr. Philip Walker of the University of California at Santa Barbara, like Larsen, an expert in determining life ways from skeletal examination. All of these physical anthropologists are experts in taphonomic examination and interpretation. The curation and conservation of the human remains will be overseen by Dr. Michael K. Trimble, U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, Dr. Nancy Odegaard, Conservator, Arizona State Museum, University of Arizona, and Dr. Vicki Cassman, Conservator and Assistant Professor, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. See DNA Plan at p. 1-5.
2. The samples collected during the week of April 24, 2000 will undergo chemical analysis to determine the collagen levels. This will be performed by Dr. R. E. Taylor, U. C. Riverside. Dr. Taylor estimates that, if no unusual conditions are encountered, the chemical analysis should be completed within one week. However, if unexpected problems arise, the chemical analysis of the microsamples may take up to 30 days. See DNA Plan at p. 6.
3. The selection of the best sample for DNA analysis will be made by comparing the results of chemical analysis and physical analysis of skeleton. This determination will be made in consultation with the entire scientific team. By the end of the April examination, the team will have established a tentative ranking of candidate bone and teeth for DNA sampling. This ranking will be evaluated in light of the final chemistry results which, as stated above, may take up to 30 days. See DNA Plan at p. 6.
4. Two laboratories will perform two separate DNA analyses. The full list of laboratories considered is set forth at DNA Plan p. 6. The questions asked of each laboratory is attached at Declaration of Jason Roberts, April 10, 2000 (Exhibit 2, Attachment 2). The Department of the Interior ("DOI") has selected the University of Michigan laboratory of Dr. D. Andrew Merriwether as the first independent laboratories for DNA analysis. As to the second, laboratory, DOI's initial discussion with Dr. Kaestle of Yale indicated a strong interest on her part as well as ability and willingness. Dr. McManamon will, in the next two weeks, discuss a few additional issues with Dr. Kaestle. In addition, Drs. Tuross and Kolman, who authored the review of what might be learned from DNA analysis of the Kennewick remains in this case, have expressed interest in undertaking the DNA analysis. However, Dr. Tuross has been out of the country and Dr. McManamon has been unable to complete his discussions with her. DOI anticipates that one of these two other labs will serve as the second independent lab for the analysis. The selection process will be concluded within the next two weeks. In addition, DOI has discussed DNA testing with Drs. O'Rourke and Stone both of whom were interested but due to their schedules could not commit to completing the analysis within the tight time frame that we need to follow. Drs. Schurr and Tiskoff lacked immediate access to a lab set up for processing ancient DNA, and Dr. Brown's lab focussed mainly upon analysis of modern DNA. See DNA Plan at p. 6-7.
5. The DNA analyses results of the two samples will be completed by September 1, 2000. Although the DNA laboratories selected have committed to completing the tests by August 1, 2000, the federal defendants are adding an additional month in case of unforseen problems. See DNA Plan at p. 6-7.
6. The DNA analysis of the metacarpal will be undertaken by Dr. David Glenn Smith, U.C. Davis and may be completed in as little as one month (early June) but may take longer. See DNA Plan at p. 8.
7. The analysis of the results, final determination of cultural affiliation, and response to plaintiffs' request t study will be completed by September 24, 2000.
B. Consultation with Plaintiffs
As required by the court, the federal defendants consulted with plaintiffs about the DNA analysis. In response to plaintiffs' proposal of Dr. David Glenn Smith as an expert in DNA analysis, Dr. McManamon began discussions with Dr. Smith in February 2000 about a protocol for DNA analysis and the completion of DNA analysis of the metacarpal which Dr. Smith had begun. See Declaration of Allison B. Rusmey, April 7, 2000 (Exihibit 3, Attachment 1, Letter from Alan Schneider to Allison B. Rumsey, February 1, 2000 attaching Affidavit of Dr. David Glenn Smith, U.C. Davis, February 1, 2000.) In addition, Dr. McManamon began consulting with Dr. R. E. Taylor, also proposed by the plaintiffs and who had performed the 1996 and 1999 radiocarbon testing of these remains, about micro-sampling the human remains in order to determine which bone, if any, could yield sufficient collagen to successfully complete DNA analysis. As stated above, both Dr. Smith and Dr. Taylor will be part of the team for the April 24, 2000 studies and micro-sampling. In order to begin the process of contacting and selecting other DNA experts and DNA laboratories, federal defendants requested on March 14, 2000 that plaintiffs submit the names of any experts and laboratories they propose using. Exhibit 2, Attachment 2. Plaintiffs responded with two names, one of which was ultimately selected. Exhibit 3, Attachments 3 and 4.
The next step was to select a team of experts and develop a protocol for the physical examination and analysis of the human remains that much occur as part of the micro-sampling. To obtain plaintiffs' input early in the process so that they could be involved in the development of the plan rather than just responding to a draft plan and to expedite the discussion by permitting the scientists to have a back and forth on the issues, federal defendants proposed that Dr. McManamon and Dr. Owsley have a face to face meeting, without their attorneys, to discuss generally the plan for completing the DNA analysis and, more specifically, the physical anthropological examination. See Exhibit 3, Attachment 2. Federal defendants first proposed the meeting on March 14, 2000. As plaintiffs' counsel did not want to have the scientists meet without counsel and Dr. Owsley was unavailable to meet in person, the parties had a conference call on March 23, 2000, to discuss the process for creating a priority list for DNA sampling that can be combined with the collagen results from Dr. Taylor's micro-sampling and to seek Dr. Owsley's recommendations for the taphonomic exam to determine bone in the best preserved condition. See Exhibit 3, Attachments 3, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10. See McManamon Declaration, Exhibit 11, Attachment 2 (FPM Notes for Discussion with Dr. Owsley, March 23, 2000). Jason Roberts, NAGPRA consultant, took ntes of that call. See Roberts Declaration (Exhibit 2, Attachment 2).
Based on that discussion, Dr. McManamon completed a draft plan for conducting the DNA investigations of the Kennewick human remains and requested another meeting with Dr. Owsley to discuss the written draft plan. Exhibit 3, Attachment 11. Dr. Owsley was unable to meet due to prior commitments. Instead, as requested by plaintiffs, federal defendants faxed the draft plan for the review of all plaintiff scientists on March 31, 2000. Exhibit 3, Attachment 12, 13. In order to have sufficient time to review all of the plaintiffs' comments before filing the final plan with the court, the federal defendants requested comments by the close of business Thursday, April 6, 2000. Plaintiffs submitted written comments on April 6, 2000. Exhibit 3, Attachment 14. Dr. McManamon reviewed the comments and, where appropriate, made changes to the Plan for DNA Analysis based upon plaintiffs' suggestions.
Dated this 10th day of April, 2000.
Lois J. Schiffer
(signed) by ts
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