Paternity Tests and How Do They Work?

Everyone has a unique genetic blueprint. This fingerprint is unique that constitutes a genetic material. The child derives his or her DNA from both his/her biological mother and biological father. This is the premises which determines paternity testing. The DNA samples from both the child and the potential father are collected and they are matched. Thereafter, the parentage is determined.

The procedure is fairly simple and uncomplicated. It requires a small amount of bodily fluids or tissues from the child and the potential father. This is normally done by swabbing the inside of the cheek.

Undoubtedly, paternity testing Nashville has become one of the most accurate and accepted method for biological proof of relationship. As mentioned before, half of a person’s DNA comes from his or her father and the other half from the father, comparison of DNA sequences can detect parentage. It can be done at a drug testing center Nashville.

Ways of Paternity Testing

The DNA samples can be attained using several methods. The DNA is then extracted using one of these numerous methods. Thereafter, these fragments are put on a gel that separates them according to your size and creates a specific band pattern. The patterns provide biological information.

Methods for generating DNA Fragments

There are two methods to gain DNA fragments. The first one is called RFLP (Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism) that absorbs the variation in DNA sequences that is picked up by restriction enzymes specifically designed to cut DNA into pieces. The second method is PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) that utilizes advantage of rapid amplification of DNA at both short tandem repeats and unique sequence.


In this method, a large family of proteins called restriction enzymes is able to detect or recognize and cut DNA at these unique sets. This method takes advantage of unique DNA designs in a particular reign across an individual’s genome. Fragments of variable sizes are generated depending upon a person’s DNA set.

When the digested fragments of the child’s DNA and that of potential father’s match, paternity test is determined. Each restriction enzyme recognizes a unique sequence. What generates DNA cuts is the small differences in the DNA at various sites. Patterns of DNA fragments cuts are compared with restriction enzymes; paternity results can be achieved. Nonetheless, it is a very slow process.


The second method copies fragments of a person’s DNA billions of times in a chain reaction. Through this, large amounts of DNA to be created   from simpler. Thereafter, these fragments are laced with fluorescent tags to ease visualization of the fragments on a gel. The paternity test is confirmed with an accuracy up to 99.9 % if half of these fragments of the child match with that of his or her potential father.

Legal proceedings involved in Paternity Testing

Legal and non-legal tests are available. Non-legal paternity tests entail take-home DNA tests that give the same results as legal paternity tests. However, these results cannot be used in the court as non-admissible evidence.

All in all, paternity testing has advanced over the ages and new studies are in the process of progress.