To Thread - Forum Home

The Mudcat Café TM
https://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=167058
9 messages

BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...

20 Dec 19 - 11:32 AM (#4024751)
Subject: BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...
From: Jack Campin

Bizarre archaeology report of the day:

Human DNA sequenced from Neolithic chewing gum


20 Dec 19 - 11:43 AM (#4024754)
Subject: RE: BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...
From: Senoufou

Most interesting Jack. There's enough chewing gum on the ground outside our local supermarkets to keep DNA laboratories going for decades. Filthy habit.


20 Dec 19 - 12:12 PM (#4024755)
Subject: RE: BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...
From: Helen

Senoufou, I would once have agreed with you about it being a filthy habit - especially the people who chewed with their mouths open and talked at the same time - but I found it useful when I was working in an office, with no contact with customers, because it stopped me from eating other stuff. It would be tempting to eat if I became bored or demotivated, but the chewy stopped that very effectively.

Leaving chewed chewing gum all over the place IS a filthy habit, though.

Lonnie Donegan - Does Your Chewing Gum Lose it's Flavour?


20 Dec 19 - 01:51 PM (#4024773)
Subject: RE: BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...
From: Senoufou

Ah yes Helen, I did mean spitting it out onto the ground is a filthy habit, not actually chewing it!

I absolutely adored Lonnie Donegan when I was young. All his songs are excellent (My Old Man's A Dustman, Rock Island Line etc)

When I did Prison Visiting, I learned that DNA is used quite a lot to identify criminals (serious crimes that is) Amazing how a crook can be identified and the evidence strengthened. How Science has advanced!


20 Dec 19 - 02:04 PM (#4024777)
Subject: RE: BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...
From: Helen

Yes, DNA is especially useful for catching crooks for crimes committed years ago. They thought they had gotten away with it and knock-knock-knock on the door, "You're nicked, sunshine!"

I remember the Dustman song. I think my Dad used to sing it sometimes.


22 Dec 19 - 07:45 AM (#4024853)
Subject: RE: BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...
From: Mr Red

I learned that DNA is used quite a lot to identify criminals (serious crimes that is)

Not necessarily serious crimes any more. In the UK the police have a right to take samples for DNA once you have been charged. There was a case where a man in prison was known (99% ish) to have committed a crime and the police were unable to take samples in prison. Only after his release, and formally charge could they get a sample. Not sure it has happened yet.

Then there was the cold case of a serial rapist (one shoe taken as a trophy). They trawled through the database for familial matches and came up with a woman who had been in a police station for a minor offence (maybe a dropped charge even!). When asked if she had a brother, she admitted she had, and rang her brother not knowing reasons. By the time the police got to him, he had hung himself, and a subsequent search found ladies' shoes under the floorboards.

AFAIK you have to be charged for the police to take samples unless you allow it. But if the charge is dropped, you have a great deal of effort to get the DNA taken off the record, if at all. If the charge is not dropped, no chance.

Drunk driving would qualify.


22 Dec 19 - 07:48 AM (#4024854)
Subject: RE: BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...
From: Donuel

Su is Ancestry.com


22 Dec 19 - 09:07 AM (#4024875)
Subject: RE: BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...
From: Mrrzy

Loved this archaeology story.

What about non-secretors?


22 Dec 19 - 03:02 PM (#4024931)
Subject: RE: BS: Does your chewing gum lose your DNA...
From: leeneia

Thanks for the link, Jack. The "chewing gum" was birch pitch, which was used to attach arrowheads and spearheads to shafts. I've often wondered how they did that.

It's an interesting article, well worth a read.