Sydney NSW, Australia
For your information
In Tanzania, Burundi, and Rwanda, the top factor affecting banana production, according to a survey, was banana _Xanthomonas_ wilt (BXW), a bacterial disease that affects all types of bananas. [The disease] is detrimental to a crop and has far-reaching consequences for food security. Researchers have indicated that BXW can result in 100 percent loss of banana stands if not properly controlled.

In early 2018, the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), in partnership with Bioversity International, the Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Transition Economies, and the Rwanda Agriculture Board, commenced a collaborative effort to tackle the disease through the use of digital technology to generate and exchange up-to-date knowledge and information about BXW.
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[_Xanthomonas campestris_ pv. _musacearum_ is the causal organism of banana bacterial wilt in central Africa (BXW; bacterial wilts due to _Ralstonia_ species are present elsewhere). BXW was 1st reported in Ethiopia in 1968 and has been spreading since then. It affects all banana types, causing wilting and premature ripening of fruit. An incidence of 70-80 percent in many plantations and yield losses of up to 90 percent have been reported.

The bacteria survive in soil and plant debris and are mainly spread via infected planting material, insects, mechanical means, and contaminated tools. A range of alternate hosts may serve as pathogen reservoirs. An integrated approach is needed for disease management. Removal of male buds immediately after fruit set has been found to prevent transmission of bacterial ooze by insects. Other control measures may include crop rotation, disinfection of orchard tools, use of certified clean material for replanting, as well as phytosanitation to reduce inoculum and prevent re-introduction and plant-to-plant spread of the pathogen. However, these measures may be difficult to implement with smallholders. No resistant banana cultivars have been identified. Research is being carried out on transgenic lines of banana containing capsicum genes for field resistance to BXW.

A number of other pathovars of _X. campestris_ with varying host specificity and affecting a range of crops (such as vegetables, fruit trees, cereals) were designated. However, some of these pathovars have now been classified as separate species (see previous ProMED-mail posts on _Xanthomonas_ diseases in the archive).
Africa, overview:
BXW symptoms
- Plants:,
- Fruit:,
- Pseudostem (bacterial oozing):
Additional information on the project:
BXW disease information:,,,, and
BXW control:, and
_X. c._ pv. _musacearum_ taxonomy:
Bioversity International:

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