If you love banana’s, then now is time to make the most of them!
In five to ten years, they probably won’t exist due to a fast moving disease compound, known as Sigatoka complex, which appears to be lethal to the world supply.
The attack of the fungi causes the immune system of the banana tree to sit down, and the metabolism of the fungi adapts to that of the host plant.
That means that the fungi can produce enzymes which then break down the plant’s cells and feeds on its sugars.
Expert Ioannis Stergiopolos told Digg ‘’We have demonstrated that two of the three most serious banana fungal diseases have become more virulent by increasing their ability to manipulate the banana’s metabolic pathways and make use of its nutrients,’’
“This parallel change in metabolism of the pathogen and the host plant has been overlooked until now and may represent a ‘molecular fingerprint’ of the adaptation process.
“It is a wake-up call to the research community to look at similar mechanisms between pathogens and their plant hosts.”
The most likely to be affected are the Cavendish banana, which is most commonly found in the supermarket as they are clones of each other, which is described as a ‘recipe for disaster’.
To avoid the fruit being wiped out, farmers are advised to apply 50 fungicide applications to their banana crops each year.