DNA Testing

Paternity DNA Testing is the most common test we perform. Usually, the test includes samples from the child, the mother and potential father.

If the biological mother is not available for testing, it is possible to perform a ‘motherless’ paternity test. But, we always recommend that the mother takes part in the test. This will increase the accuracy and is also a mandatory need for Legal DNA tests. Also, the paternity test is the most appropriate to use if you want to change a birth certificate.

More detailed information about this test is given below. Please feel free to discuss your needs by calling our Clinical Advisor team. Also, they will be able to answer any technical questions you might have.

How does the Paternity DNA Test work?

We analyse many genetic locations in a paternity test. A person possesses two (of many possible) alleles at each genetic location. We identify the alleles by numbers. As a result, this looks like a list of 2 columns of numbers for each person. These ‘numbers’ come from the parents at conception. One comes from the mother and one from the father.

Next, we list the DNA profiles of biological parents together. From this, one of the child’s alleles (numbers) will match up with a number from the mother’s sample. The other should match up with an allele from the father’s sample.

If the alleles (numbers) match at all locations, we will include the person as the biological father of the child. This proves they have passed these genetic markers to the child at conception.

Locations where there is NO match will exclude a person as a biological father. This is because it is only possible to pass on to your off-spring the alleles which you have in your own DNA profile.

For your convenience, we have put together this short video to explain how this test works.


How long does it take to get your Paternity DNA Test results back?

So, the analysis time needed in the lab for the Paternity DNA Test is three working days*. We will always endeavour to get the results to you as quickly as possible. However, during Covid-19 restrictions, turn-around times may be longer.

*Quoted lead-times are based on from when samples are booked onto the laboratory system. Also, quoted lead-times do not apply when issues arise from documents or samples provided that do not meet our quality guidelines.


How accurate is a Paternity DNA Test?

At least 99.9999% probability for inclusion (positive result) as a biological father. This result means that a person is at least 1 million times more likely to be the biological father of the child tested. This is against an unrelated individual from the same ethnic group. In this case, this relates to a test which includes the mother’s DNA sample.

For negative results, the probability is 0% when excluded as a biological father. This result means that there is 0% chance that the person tested is the biological father of the child.

This DNA test is the gold standard for paternity testing. It provides conclusive results and the highest levels of accuracy. But when the mother of the child is not tested, the DNA evidence available to the laboratory decreases. For a positive paternity test result, the probability of paternity must be very high. In most cases when we include the mother in the test, this probability of paternity is over 99.9999%.

When the mother is not tested, this percentage can decrease to 99.99%. But we will still report this as a positive paternity result. This is because this high percentage still proves paternity.


Does the mother need to take part in a Paternity DNA Test?

Getting an accurate result for this test is of the utmost importance to us. We recommend that you include the biological mother of a child in your test. Also, we will test the mother’s DNA for free as it improves the accuracy of the result. As mentioned, a motherless paternity test can be undertaken. But you must be aware of the decrease in the statistical percentage.

Also, if the father is not available for testing, you could consider Sibling DNA Testing or Grandparent DNA Testing. This is an indirect way of establishing paternity. Please call and speak to a Clinical Advisor to discuss your options.


What if any alleged fathers are related?

If this is the case, you must discuss this with our clinical team. For example, this includes if potential fathers are brothers, father or son etc. We may still be able to undertake this test for you. A Clinical Advisor will talk you through the options available.


How do I order a Paternity DNA Test?

There are many options available to you, these include:

  • Order a self-collection Paternity Test kit from Boots*
  • Order a free Paternity Test kit from our online store*
  • Call to make an appointment at one of our DNA Clinics
  • Call to arrange for a sample collection technician to visit your location
  • You or your solicitor can contact us to organise a Legal Paternity DNA Test for court purposes

* Please note, you can only use self-collection kits for peace of mind purposes only.


Why choose DNA Clinics for your Paternity Test?

  • DNA Clinics is a brand partner of Boots
  • Processing of all Paternity DNA Tests is in a UK laboratory with UKAS accreditation
  • A standard turnaround of only 3 days for Paternity Test results
  • Established in 2005, our team of experts will guide you through the science
  • Unrivalled convenience with a choice of over 50 DNA Clinics nationwide
  • Certification to 3 ISO standards. This includes Quality, Information Security and Environment standards
  • We are a registered company with the Information Commissioner’s Office


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