Published Date: 2002-08-13 23:50:00
Subject: PRO/PL> Banana bunchy top virus, banana - Pakistan (Sindh)
Archive Number: 20020813.5035
BANANA BUNCHY TOP VIRUS, BANANA - PAKISTAN (SINDH)
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International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: 12 Aug 2002
From: ProMED-mail <email@example.com>
Source: The Frontier Post / APP [8 Aug 2002 2:45 PM] [edited]
The dangerous Banana bunchy top virus (BBTV) has once again attacked banana
plants in lower Sindh, damaging its standing crop. M H Panhwar told APP
here Wednesday that the viral attack is currently on a small scale but
enough to cause sufficient damage to the banana crop.
Panhwar, a prominent agricultural scientist, said the virus is carried by
an aphid which survives on banana. Aphids containing the virus are carried
by the winds and die within 2 to 3 hours if they do not land on banana plants.
No banana is immune to BBTV and there is no cure for the disease. Panhwar
said that upper Sindh is saved from BBTV attack, as it cannot travel to
this area, nor would it survive in the cold climate of upper Sindh. Panhwar
also said affected banana plants should be sprayed with kerosene oil and
buried. He urged that banana farmers be provided with training to combat
Panhwar said the banana crop used to cover an area of about 200 000 acres,
producing 600 000 metric tons of fruit in the province. Now the area has
been squeezed to one-third because of viral attacks in the past. He noted
that BBTV had damaged the entire crop in Sindh in 1991.
[BBTV is one of 4 species in the genus Nanovirus; other species are Faba
bean necrotic yellows, Milk vetch dwarf and Subterranean clover stunt (type
species). A tentative species is Coconut foliar decay virus. The virus is
spread by the banana aphid (_Pentalonia nigronervosa_) and by infected
suckers or stools. The only hosts of the virus are species of _Musa_.