Genetic testing or DNA testing has enriched science. Tests like paternity testing have changed the way people formulate medicine, especially how medical professionals suggest cures.
It even helps forensic labs and police solve cases. One can also trace their family tree through paternity and DNA testing.
Why Paternity Testing?
For some, it is important to establish a family line. In addition, they may also want to find certain members of the family from the past.
Firstly, paternity testing will establish the lineage of a child. It makes it easy for the father to claim legal rights to support the child.
Secondly, the father also gets to access child custody, social security and benefits.
Thirdly, some can also access links to certain genetic conditions that may affect their health.
How is a Paternity Test Done?
Firstly, there are blood tests. For example, both father and child give the blood samples at the medical office. Then the facility will send the samples for lab analysis.
Secondly, one can get cheek swabs. The potential father and the child can get cheek swabs. The swabs get taken from the inside of their cheeks for buccal cells. After that, the cotton swab applicators are sent to a designated lab.
Confirmation of Paternity
The lab does a series of tests called DNA sequencing. These genes get subjected to these tests. Therefore, medical professionals look for genetic matches between the potential father and the child. In conclusion, a match confirms paternity.
Blood-Typing in Paternity Tests
Alec Jeffreys developed DNA fingerprinting in 1984. It first became available for paternity testing in 1988. However, before this was available, blood groups decided paternity. Mendelian genetics governed the blood groups. Above all, there are numerous human blood groups with multiple alleles. Those alleles exhibit a range of dominance patterns.
For instance, the best-known blood-typing system is ABO typing. It involves the presence of antigens on red blood cells. ABO locus on human chromosome 9 encodes the red blood cells.
In addition to that, in the ABO system, the A allele and the B allele are codominant. On the other hand, the O allele is recessive. In conclusion, if a person’s ABO blood type is O, he or she has two O alleles. However, if their blood type is A, he or she has either two A alleles or one A allele and one O allele. Similarly, if a person’s blood type is B, then there is the presence of either two B alleles or one B allele and one O allele. Similarly, some people have type AB blood. It means they inherited both an A allele and a B allele.
For instance, ABO blood-typing can confirm to exclude a man from being a child’s father. In other words, a man with a blood type AB may father a child with Type O. Some rare cases exist where the child is a Type O.
ABO blood groups are tricky. They cannot confirm whether a man is the child’s father.
For instance, in a famous case in 1943, starlet Joan Barry claimed actor Charlie Chaplin of fathering her child. Blood tests definitively excluded Chaplin as the father. However, the court did not consider this evidence as an admission. Therefore, Chaplin had to pay child support to Barry. After that, the Barry/Chaplin case spurred the passage of new laws. It, however, launched a new era in forensic evidence.