Differences between exclusion, inclusion and court opinions

The customer’s demand on the result of his analysis or the intended use of the analysis is critical for the required effort and thus also for the costs of an analysis. An inquiry of a customer in his own interest, whether “only” a relationship between specimens can be excluded, offered by us under “exclusion analysis“, represents  in principle in many cases a question easily solvable by the laboratory, which requires no interpretation by a genetic statistician.

The positive proof of a relationship is offered by us as “inclusion analysis“. Although the laboratory techniques used are often identical in terms of effort, inclusion requires statistical consideration by an expert. In addition, the use of additional markers may be necessary for rarer species.

The complexity, respectively the workload of a specialist in such an examination depends on two parameters: an analysis, the result of which serves an internal use, for example for the purpose of breeding, usually gets by with moderate statistical significance, which can be specified in principle by our customers themselves. The desired statistical certainty can be increased at will by using additional markers or entire marker sets on request. However, inclusion analyses for such purposes never have to conform to the probative force of an official prosecution or export or import permit. In this respect, these applications always require the expertise of an experienced biostatistician, but do not require the quality and liability-proof claims of an accredited expert. However, our offer also comprises such “legally enforceable” analyses. In this service category, legal requirements determine the required statistical certainty. Such an order can be offered for a fixed price for very well-known species with very well-known allele frequencies, but in the case of rare species and uncertain or unknown allele-frequencies, we can only estimate the effort required on a case-by-case basis and cannot guarantee this in advance. In such cases please contact our experts directly under the contact data for LfA GmbH.

How difficult it is to achieve the required statistical certainty or the legal capacity of an analysis depends on the given genetic conditions, which require a categorisation of our performance along another dimension, which we will explain below.

Statistical requirements: Frequency of the allele frequencies - frequency of the species requested

The significance of an analysis or the laboratory effort which must be invested in order to achieve the required significance is practically always dependent on whether the requested analysis refers to well known, rarely occurring species or species which have not yet appeared in our laboratories or in other laboratories worldwide, or only extremely rarely. In this respect, our price categories I – IV for exclusions, inclusions and court-proof analysis are different.

The statistical certainty of an analysis, or the effort with which a requested statistical certainty can be achieved, depends exclusively on how precisely the frequency of the individual alleles of a marker occurring in a species or sub-species are known. On one side of the spectrum, namely for very well known, frequently analyzed species, we can also offer legally binding (court-proof), expertly substantiated analyses in a price category I, such as are usual on the market for genetically or statistically simple expert services, e.g. for human pedigree analyses.

At the other end of the spectrum there are analyses for species which are so rare that even with an arbitrary amount of effort, a sufficiently large number of specimens could never be found or analyzed which would then allow a statistically legally binding statement to be made. For such species, we cannot offer a court-proof category IV analysis. The price categories II and III then lie between these extremes, for frequently requested species these are listed exemplarily in our price tables, for species not mentioned please contact LfA GmbH directly with your enquiries.