Rebuttal to the Columbus Dispatch Article Appearing on 09/23/03 
Titled, "Key Genes Separate Humans from Chimps"

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September 23, 2003 was yet another attempt by the Columbus Dispatch to convince the central Ohio public that the mirage of macroevolution (monkeys to man evolution) is a proven fact. The commentary in question begins by attempting to say that scientists are on the path of determining what specific gene mutations have resulted in the vast morphological differences observed in humans and chimpanzees.

The author then attempts to conclude that evolutionists have discovered how humans and chimpanzees could have had a common ancestor 5 million years ago by saying that, "New species evolve as successful mutations accumulate." When acknowledged in the proper context, the statement is accurate; however it has nothing to do with the mechanism of macroevolution. Macroevolution requires the addition of information to the gene code. The mechanism of mutations will not fit this requirement so the above statement is irrelevant to proving macroevolution ever happened.

The perceived scientific foundation of this Dispatch commentary seems to be an article (the author has neglected to provide a proper reference) that was published by a group at the Wayne State University School of Medicine in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (PNAS) on June 10, 2003. The PNAS article concludes that human and chimp DNA only differ by ~1%.1 While it is not the first time that evolutionists have proposed this percentage, it is not without some controversy. First, while human DNA is known to contain upwards of 3 billion base pairs, the article in question is only comparing 92,000 DNA base pairs (not exactly statistically significant). Second, other authors who have compared more base pairs and include INDEL tabulations in the data, have concluded that the human / chimp DNA base pair difference is more like ~5%. 2 Moreover, a recent article published in PNAS suggests the DNA difference between human and chimps could potentially be closer to ~10%. 3 Third, in a worst-case scenario, 1% of 3 billion base pairs is still a DNA difference between humans and chimpanzees of 30 million base pairs!

Now that a more balanced treatment of the human / chimp DNA comparison is presented, it is amazing to witness an OSU professor quoted in this commentary as saying, "Chimp and humans are virtually the same thing.... at the genetic level." A potential difference of 300 million base pairs in the DNA code is not my definition of "the same thing."

In conclusion, the primary purpose of this commentary is an all too familiar attempt by the Columbus Dispatch to present highly controversial evolutionary dogma as scientific fact. While the Columbus Dispatch has the right to practice irresponsible journalism, this should not be the accepted mode of writing from a high quality newspaper desiring to be balanced.


1. Wildman,D.E., Uddin, M., Guozhen, L., Grossman, L.I., Goodman, M.,(2003) PNAS, 100(12), 7181-7188
2. Britten, R.J., (2003) PNAS, 99(21), 13633-13635.
3. Britten, R.J., Rowen, L., Williams, J., Cameron, A., (2003) PNAS, 100(8), 4661-4665.

Patrick Young, Ph.D.
Canal Winchester, Ohio 

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