chapter  12
32 Pages

Disaster Victim Identification, Identification of Missing Persons and Immigration Cases

ByJohn S. Buckleton, Jo-Anne Bright, Duncan Taylor

This chapter considers situations such as the identification of missing persons, the evaluation of the genetic closeness of relationships in immigration cases and the identification of victims of disasters. The purpose of disaster victim identification may be to bring justice or closure to the families of the missing and also to show respect to the victims themselves by treating them with individual dignity. The identification of human remains has been undertaken without the aid of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) typing for many years, and a wide range of approaches are appropriate for differing circumstances. In certain circumstances mtDNA offers a number of advantages over nuclear DNA. Extraction of DNA from tooth, hair, nail and bone poses a significant technical challenge. The chapter focuses on the calculation of likelihood ratios based on calculating the probability of the observed genotypes if the postulated relationship is true or false.