OBJECTIVE This article reports a population genetic study on two short tandem repeat loci, D19S253 and D8S1179, in a sample of unrelated Chinese individuals(n=225-233) living in Wuhan. METHODS PCR and PAGE. RESULTS Nine alleles were identified for the two loci, the ranges of fragment size were 209bp-241bp and 174bp-206bp respectively. The genotypes distributions of D19S253 and D8S1179 were in accordance with Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. Family studies confirmed Mendelian inheritance of alleles. No mutation was detected in 100 meiosis for the two STR loci studied. The observed heterozygosities of D19S253 and D8S1179 were 0.8089 and 0.8712. The polymorphism information content(PIC) in Chinese was calculated as 0.7754 for D19S253 and 0.8258 for D8S1179. The power of discrimination(PD) and mean exclusion chance(MEC) were 0.9309 and 0.6133 for D19S253 and 0.9515 and 0.6874 for D8S1179 respectively. The combined PD and cumulative chance of exclusion were calculated as 0. 9966 and 0.8791. CONCLUSION The results demonstrate that the combined use of the two polymorphic systems provides a high power of discrimination and power of exclusion for use in forensic identification and paternity testing.