DrawPed: FAQs

DrawPed does not do what I want

My pedigree is not drawn correctly. Why?
This may happen in case of complex pedigrees, e.g. with several consanguinity loops or persons having children with several partners. Our algorithm tries to find the best (and formally correct) representation of a pedigree, in some cases this is impossible. Tools allowing manual input are a better choice for such pedigrees. HaploPainter is not web-based but will draw almost every pedigree, sometimes by duplicating persons. It requires manual relocation of individuals to create formally correct pedigree charts.
Individuals in my pedigree are not drawn in the order I want. What can I do?
We try to make pedigrees as formally correct as possible, e.g. by having fathers left of mothers whenever possible. Children are ordered by their ID, we do not consider their age. If you want to change the drawing order, you should consider using another application which allows manual movement of persons (e.g. Progeny or HaploPainter).
I'm getting an error from my pedigree file.
There are some things we cannot (yet) draw in DrawPed, such as backcrossing (i.e. recurrent parents) or pedigrees, which cause overlapping lines in the pedigree chart.
Please refer to the documentation for a complete list of limitations.
Can I show two different traits in the pedigree?
No. We decided against this because it would make DrawPed more complex. It would be easy to implement though, please drop an email should you require this feature.
Why aren't heterozygous carriers indicated?
Two reasons:
1) Drawing carriers as half-filled as seen in old textbooks is no longer considered correct! Half-filled would indicate that he/she shows one of two traits and the dot has also become obsolete (see Bennett et al.). The alternative with divided symbols is not yet widely accepted.
2) While we could assume from the pedigree that someone likely is a carrier, we do not know this - this would require genotyping or exact knowledge of the mode of inheritance, including penetrance, phenocopies, and the likelihood of de novo mutations.

Why does DrawPed do this?

Why on earth are persons with unknown affection indicated by a blue outline?
Because we had no better idea! Using a grey background could be interpreted as 'mildly affected' and a big question mark was too annoying. We're open to suggestions!
Why is the same pedigree chart sometimes drawn wider when I refresh the chart?
Since we were unable to determine rules that fit all pedigrees, we use iterations to draw the 'prettiest' pedigree chart. In some cases, this may lead to matings which are wider than needed. Please refresh again to obtain a better pedigree chart.
Why are all persons that I add shown as unaffected?
Usually most people in a family are unaffected by a genetic disorder. If you would like to change the affection, you may do so by clicking on the symbol in the pedigree or changing the value in the pedigree text field.

I want to do something with DrawPed or its output

How can I sort children by their age?
The standard PED file does not include the age. DrawPed sorts children by their ID - changing the IDs (e.g. by using 1_, 2_... as prefixes) will change their order.
How do I add consanguineous matings to my pedigree?
To start off with a consanguineous pedigree, you can use the example provided on the landing page.
If you have an existing pedigree and want to add a person, which is a child of a union of persons already in the pedigree, please just add a new line to the pedigree text field. It is not (yet) possible to do this by clicking inside the pedigree chart.
As a reminder; you need to add the following information in a tab-separated format: ID of new person, ID of father, ID of mother, sex (male=1, female=2), affection (unaffected=1, affected=2).
Can I do whatever I want with DrawPed or your code?
Yes. As long as you credit us (or cite us, in case of a scientific publication).
I want to publish my pedigree chart without these IDs. How can I get rid of them?
Tick the 'hide IDs' box next to the Family ID field. Note that you can either print all or no IDs. But you can add an unlimited number of proband arrows to highlight persons.

My question about DrawPed is still unanswered

I have another question!
Please send an email to dominik.seelow AT bih-charite.de.