DNA maternity tests are not as common as their paternity counterparts; however there are instances in which their use is vital to proving the biological relationship between a mother and a child. Working in the exact same way as a paternity test they compare the DNA of a child with the alleged mother. A DNA Maternity test can be used for a variety of reasons ranging from proof of identity in adoption cases to confirming relationships in immigration cases.
In adoption cases, it is not uncommon for children who have been adopted to want to find their biological parents, whether to answer identity questions, for reasons of a medical nature, or simply for peace of mind. A reform is currently in process of the Adoption of Children Act 1964 which will allow more information to be given to adopted children about their birth parents, however, if a person is without official information, then the only scientific way to confirm a biological relationship is through a DNA test.
Donor conception is another instance where offspring may, in the future, wish to locate their birth parents. The reasons for these reunions are numerous ranging from personal and emotional reasons, to medical reasons, in the instance of organ donation, where a match must be made and more often than not, these are best coming from a parent, child or sibling.
Immigration departments are also using DNA tests as part of the application process concerning visas and citizenship. In New Zealand, The Department of Immigration and Citizenship endorses DNA testing as one means of providing evidence of a claimed, biological, family relationship. Usually, other forms of evidence will suffice, such as birth certificates or family books; however, DNA testing is a useful option when other evidence is unreliable or unavailable.
Previously, immigration applications have been very slow to process, but thanks to DNA tests now confirming a relationship with scientific certainty, they can now be completed much quicker and with more accuracy. If you are looking for an immigration DNA test click here.
What Does The Test Involve?
The test would begin by looking at the 21 different markers in the DNA of each person participating in the test. We all have a pair of each of these markers, one being inherited from the biological mother and one being inherited from the biological father. The test would then make comparisons of these markers between the mother and the child. A child’s markers are made up of 50% from its mother and 50% from its father.
It is possible to conduct these tests in a father’s absence, with a laboratory testing the same 21 genetic marker to obtain the required level of certainty about the relationship. A laboratory will not report a result unless there is at least a 99% probability that the possible mother is or isn’t the biological mother of the child.