Knowledge for Development

Screening the banana biodiversity for drought

Author:

Date: 02/07/2013

Introduction:

There is a great need for research aimed at understanding drought tolerance. Screening for drought tolerant varieties and breeding crops with improved water use efficiency is a crucial step in the right direction. Bananas and plantains are a major staple food (especially in Africa and the Pacific – editor’s note) and export product (in the Caribbean – editor’s note) with a worldwide production of over 135 million tonnes per year. Water however is the most limiting abiotic factor in banana production. Five varieties representing different genomic constitutions in banana (AAAh, AAA, AAB, AABp, and ABB) were selected and subjected to a mild osmotic stress. The ABB variety showed the smallest stress induced growth reduction.  

(Bioversity International, 2012)

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