DNA profile match probability calculation: how to allow for population stratification, relatedness, database selection and single bands

Forensic Sci Int. 1994 Feb;64(2-3):125-40. doi: 10.1016/0379-0738(94)90222-4.


In DNA profile analysis, uncertainty arises due to a number of factors such as sampling error, single bands and correlations within and between loci. One of the most important of these factors is kinship: criminal and innocent suspect may share one or more bands through identity by descent from a common ancestor. Ignoring this uncertainty is consistently unfair to innocent suspects. The effect is usually small, but may be important in some cases. The report of the US National Research Committee proposed a complicated, ad-hoc and overly-conservative method of dealing with some of these problems. We propose an alternative approach which addresses directly the effect of kinship. Whilst remaining conservative, it is simple, logically coherent and makes efficient use of the data.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alleles
  • Chromosome Banding
  • DNA / analysis*
  • Forensic Medicine / methods*
  • Gene Frequency
  • Genealogy and Heraldry
  • Genetics, Population*
  • Heterozygote
  • Homozygote
  • Humans
  • Matched-Pair Analysis
  • Probability


  • DNA