Trends, Foresights, & Insights: Never Miss, or Misread a Trend Again

The banana streak virus can not only be spread from plant to plant by insects which also integrates its DNA into the banana’s genome.  Genome editing has been used to destroy a virus that lurks inside many of the bananas grown in Africa.  When these plants are stressed by heat or drought, the virus emerges from dormancy and causes outbreaks that can destroy plantations.  But the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture in Kenya has now used the CRISPR genome editing method to target and destroy the viral DNA inside the genome of a banana variety called Gonja Manjaya.  The plan is to use these plants to breed virus-free plants for farmers. 


Lightbulb Moment: This is a fabulous use of GM and is the sort of story consumers need to become more familiar with to combat fear laden misinformation on what and how GM can be utilized.