4.0 Introduction

Who’s the daddy?

Figure 4.1 A local billboard sign on DNA paternity test.

How many men are actually raising kids that didn’t come from the man’s own sperm? Estimates vary wildly, from less than 1% to a scandalous 30%. Recent work with DNA testing puts the rate of “non-paternity” closer to 4% overall, with some studies citing less than 1% and others as much as 10%. Without their knowledge, these men may be investing time, money and affection in children they did not create. DNA paternity testing has become relatively common, and can be done with a simple and inexpensive kit purchased at many pharmacies.

DNA science has changed our lives dramatically. But what does “DNA science” mean? What is DNA? What does it do? And what role does DNA play in sex, evolution, and human behavior?



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The Evolution and Biology of Sex Copyright © 2020 by Sehoya Cotner and Deena Wassenberg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.