In forensic science, X-chromosomal short tandem repeats (ChrX STRs) bear the potential to efficiently complement the analysis of other genetic markers (autosomal, Y-chromosomal or mitochondrial). We review the population genetic properties and forensic utility of selected ChrX markers, and discuss the problems and limitations arising with their practical use. Formulae required to assess the evidential power of individual markers in different contexts are summarised and applied to ChrX STRs of interest. Since linkage and linkage disequilibrium between markers affect the inferential interpretation of genotype data, practically relevant information regarding the co-localisation and haplotypic association of ChrX STRs is provided. Finally, two examples of complex kinship testing are presented which serve to highlight the particular importance of ChrX STRs for solving deficiency cases and cases involving blood relatives.
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