Skip main navigation

Statistical analysis

In this video, Dr Gavin Turbett and Dr Vivek Sahajpal challenge the myth of uniqueness of DNA profiles.

Are DNA profiles unique? What are likelihood ratios and why are they relevant in forensic DNA profiling? What is the use of a population database? Why is the use of statistical analysis limited in India? Let us explore these questions with Dr Turbett and Dr Sahajpal.

As you’ll recall from the lessons in week 4, we examine only certain loci within the non-coding regions of the DNA and, two unrelated individuals might share alleles at a particular locus. While every individual’s genome is unique, are forensic DNA profiles unique as well? Is it scientifically accurate to use the term ‘match’ while reporting DNA results?

In your jurisdiction, what kind of statistical analysis is conducted in DNA cases? Have you seen terms such as ‘match’, ‘perfect match’ or ‘100 % match’ in forensic DNA profiling reports? Share with us in the comments below.

*References for images

Certain images in this video are sourced from ‘Australia New Zealand Policing Advisory Agency, National Institute of Forensic Science: An introductory guide to evaluative reporting (2017)’.

This article is from the free online

Decoding Forensics for Legal Professionals

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now