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How to distinguish genetically between an alleged father and his monozygotic twin: a thought experiment [Letter]

Krawczak, Michael, Cooper, David Neil, Fändrich, Fred, Engel, Wolfgang and Schmidtke, Jörg 2012. How to distinguish genetically between an alleged father and his monozygotic twin: a thought experiment [Letter]. Forensic Science International: Genetics 6 (5) , e129-e130. 10.1016/j.fsigen.2011.11.003

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Abstract

Recently, a first direct estimate of the single base-pair substitution rate in the human germline was derived from genome-wide DNA sequence data. This result has shed new light upon the question of whether cutting-edge molecular genetic analysis could, in a paternity dispute, potentiate discrimination between two alleged fathers who are monozygotic (MZ) twins. Such paternity cases are not infrequent and usually receive a high level of public attention. We performed a ‘thought experiment’, the outcome of which strongly suggests that, by a combination of currently available laboratory techniques, paternity testing is indeed feasible in the context of MZ twins. Taking into consideration what is known about the biology of the human male germline, we would predict that >80% of the offspring of one twin brother would carry at least one germline mutation that would be detectable in the sperm of their father, but not in that of the other twin.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH426 Genetics
R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Uncontrolled Keywords: twins, paternity, PCR, mutation, next-generation sequencing
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 1872-4973
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 03:42
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/25268

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