Crop Biotech Update

CRISPR Improves Resistance of Banana to Xanthomonas Wilt Disease

November 29, 2023

A recent study published in the Plant Biotechnology Journal shows improvement in bananas' resistance to Xanthomonas wilt disease by knocking out the MusaENODL3 gene. According to the researchers, this is the first study to show the potential of the ENODL gene in developing disease-resistant plants.

Banana Xanthomonas wilt (BXW) is a bacterial disease triggered by Xanthomonas campestris pv. musacearum (Xcm). This causes bananas to rot from the inside out. BXW disease is a threat persistent in East and Central Africa that resulted in massive yield and economic losses.

To address this, researchers utilized a targeted genome editing technique using CRISPR-Cas9 to precisely knock out MusaENODL3 from the BXW-susceptible banana cultivar, Gonja Manjaya. This study offers significant insights into the ongoing research for developing disease-resistant banana varieties.

For more information, read the article from Plant Biotechnology Journal.

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