Fred Smith, chair of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Illinois State University, told Discovery News that Roksandic and her team "have done excellent work on this site and specimen."
Smith, however, questions the possibility that the remains are of a new human species, since he wonders if "they are actually older than the current dating suggests. Furthermore, there is a wide range of variation within Neanderthals, so it is not impossible that the Mala Balanica mandible is part of that variation."
Such questions may be answered in the future, as Mihailovic hopes future excavations will take place in Greece, Romania, Bulgaria and other parts of the Balkans. Over the past 10 years he and his colleagues have identified more than 100 caves with potential Paleolithic sediments in Serbia and Montenegro alone.