ISFG: Recommendations on biostatistics in paternity testing

Vincenzo Lorenzo Pascali, Dw Gjertson, Ch Brenner, Mp Baur, Angel Carracedo, F Guidet, Ja Lugue, R Lessig, Wr Mayr, Pm Schneider, N. Morling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

185 Citations (Scopus)


The Paternity Testing Commission (PTC) of the International Society for Forensic Genetics has taken up the task of establishing the biostatistical recommendations in accordance with the ISO 17025 standards and a previous set of ISFG recommendations specific to the genetic investigations in paternity cases. In the initial set, the PTC recommended that biostatistical evaluations of paternity are based on a likelihood ratio principle - yielding the paternity index, PI. Here, we have made five supplementary biostatistical recommendations. The first recommendation clarifies and defines basic concepts of genetic hypotheses and calculation concerns needed to produce valid PIs. The second and third recommendations address issues associated with population genetics (allele probabilities, Y-chromosome markers, mtDNA, and population substructuring) and special circumstances (deficiency/reconstruction and immigration cases), respectively. The fourth recommendation considers strategies regarding genetic evidence against paternity. The fifth recommendation covers necessary documentation, reporting details and assumptions underlying calculations. The PTC strongly suggests that these recommendations should be adopted by all laboratories involved in paternity testing as the basis for their biostatistical analysis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)223-231
Number of pages9
JournalForensic Science International: Genetics
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • DNA investigations
  • Genetic testing
  • Immigration testing
  • International Society for Forensic Genetics (ISFG)
  • Likelihood ratio
  • Paternity Testing Commission (PTC)
  • Paternity index (PI)
  • Paternity testing
  • Relationship testing
  • biostatistics
  • paternity testing


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