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Australia 19/05/2023

Australian scientists present solution that could combat Fusarium R4T

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Scientists at the University of Queensland in Australia have developed a genetically modified banana that could combat one of the most deadly and damaging diseases: Fusarium R4T.

According to the Agricultural Plant Biotechnology Association (Agro-bio), this banana would be the first genetically modified fruit seeking approval for commercial cultivation.

The variety named Qcav-4 will undergo an evaluation process to become a potential solution to protect the banana industry in countries affected by Fusarium, while also being approved for human consumption.

According to Agro-bio, the scientists took a resistance gene from a wild banana and introduced it into the Cavendish variety, the most commercially grown and sold variety worldwide.

This genetic modification would provide greater resistance to the disease and help improve farmers' yields while maintaining the same taste and shelf life as the traditional version. Additionally, it is expected to be environmentally friendly due to the reduced use of agrochemicals to control the fungus.

James Dale, who led the development of this resistant variety, said that if the Australian government approves this variety, it could be available to farmers in about five years.

Fusarium R4T is a soil-borne fungus that infects the roots of banana plants and eventually kills them. The most lethal characteristic of this fungus is that it can persist in soils for decades.

 
 
source:agronegocios.co
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According to the Agricultural Plant Biotechnology Association (Agro-bio), the Qcav-4 would be the first genetically modified fruit seeking approval for commercial cultivation. (photo:cabidigitallibrary.org)
 
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