Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Editing colours in the GeneMANIA visualisation

We've been asked recently whether it is possible to customise the colours used in the GeneMANIA visualisation. We understand the rationale behind this request: Sometimes, it is useful to change the colours to have a better aesthetic fit with a publication.

That being said, the colours used in GeneMANIA were not chosen arbitrarily. We chose the colours of most of the networks to be strong, and we chose much lighter, less saturated colours for co-expression and co-localisation networks.

Often, edges for co-expression and co-localisation form close to the complete graph. Since this does not add much visual information, we decided to make these edges less visually prominent and not affect the layout.

In future, we may have a feature to allow the user to change the network colours. However, this will need to take into account the impact it will have on usability and layout.

In the meanwhile, you can edit the colours of the network in the PDF report with a tool like Adobe Illustrator. The next version of GeneMANIA will support exporting the network as SVG. Since SVG is an open format, it should be easier to edit.


  1. Hi Max,

    It's worth mentioning that you can edit the colours in the network using a tool like Adobe Illustrator on the PDF report. And also that our next release will output the network display in an SVG format which may be easier for some people to deal with