Not only people, but also deities doubted who is the real father of the child. The wife of the main god of Olympus, Hera, suspected that the queen of Thebes Alcmena gave birth to a son not from a mere mortal, but from her husband Zeus. To make sure of this, she sent two snakes to the cradle with the baby. The newborn strangled both, thus confirming the relationship with the great Zeus. This was the first paternity test known to the world.
Today, there are several methods to find out if a particular man is the father of a child. For example, if there is a clear external similarity, you can conduct a portrait examination. They also compare on the basis of fingerprints, developmental characteristics (they coincide in many parameters for the father and the child), heredity. But the most accurate today is recognized as a genetic examination based on DNA. By the way, only this method is legally valid in Russia.
The need for such an examination arises often and not without reason. According to statistics, 20 percent of men who apply for a paternity test receive a negative result, that is, they are actually raising not their children. Women often need this test to get their father to pay child support.
Thanks to modern technology, biologists have the ability to read the DNA code of any person. And not only to read, but also to compare STR-loci - DNA fragments, each of which consists of nucleotide units repeating with a certain sequence. Relationship is determined by these sequences. Human DNA contains tens of thousands of genes. Scientists have derived statistics, according to which the reliability of paternity can be confirmed if at least 14 loci are identical. However, most laboratories carry out a comparative analysis of 23-30 fragments, thus eliminating even the smallest chance of coincidence. If at least three loci do not coincide, the fact of paternity is called into question.
The International Organization for Human Identification has established the following match values:
- 99.75 - 99.99% - paternity is practically proven;
- 99 - 99.7% - paternity is highly probable;
- 95 - 98.5% - paternity is very likely;
- 90 - 94.5% - paternity is likely.
As the specialists of the Lab-DNK laboratory explain, a 100% result will never be obtained due to the peculiarities of the calculation formula. If 25 loci are examined and coincide, then the probability of paternity will be 99.999999% or more.
However, the question of the reliability of the examination periodically comes up. Nikolai Kuzub, Deputy Head of the State Committee for Forensic Medical Examination of the Republic of Belarus, cites a case when the examination was powerless in determining paternity. In two men - identical twins, the DNA was also identical. Who of them to pay child support has not been found out.
The DNA test is truly 100% guaranteed. However, it is easy to counterfeit. As a rule, private laboratories "sin" with this. So, Nikolai Kuzub gives an example when a couple turned to them with the results of a genetic examination of a private foreign laboratory. According to her data, the child is not his own father. Re-examination showed that the laboratory examined the genetic material of completely different people. In fact, the child turned out to be native. It is no coincidence that not only in Belarus, but also in Russia, studies of private laboratories are not recognized in court.
"The work of private research laboratories is not regulated in any way by law",
- explains Pavel Ivanov, head of the specialized center for molecular genetic examinations of the Russian center for forensic medical examination.He says that the federal law on state expert activity regulates the work of state institutions, and non-state ones are encouraged to use the same instructions. But “recommended” does not mean “must”. Therefore, private traders work - who is in what is much. Nobody will ask them for false information or violations in the collection of genetic material.
Dmitry Gladyshev, director of the Versiya independent examination bureau, is also sure that there are many fraudsters on the market for private genetic research. According to him, there are more than 90 private expert organizations in Moscow today. Many of them do not even conduct research, but give the result that the client ordered. Some work with genetic material sent by mail, which is unacceptable, since, according to the law, samples must be taken from those examined personally by laboratory specialists and in the presence of all interested parties.