Banana bract mosaic virus

The Banana bract mosaic virus (BBrMV) is the causal agent of bract mosaic. BBrMV belongs to the genus Potyvirus in the family Potyviridae. The virus is known to infect only banana and can be transmitted in a nonpersistent manner (i.e. retained by the vector for a short period) by at least three species of aphid, Pentalonia nigronervosa, Aphis gossypii and Rhopalosiphum maidis.

Detection tools

A number of tools to detect BBrMV using ELISA and RT-PCR approaches have been developed1 2 3 . In 2008, a new international standard to index BBrMV using an IC One-step RT-PCR assay was proposed4 . The essay, which is simultaneously performed in the same tube, involves a BBrMV-specific immunocapture (IC) step followed by a reverse transcription (RT) and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to amplify the RNA viral genome. To obtain a broad detection spectrum, primers were selected from the multiple sequence alignment of 23 isolates available in GenBank. The assay enables detection of BBrMV in leaf extracts of single or bulked samples of 10 plants, even at low virus concentration.


1 Thomas, J.E., Geering, A., Gambley, C.F., Kessling, A.F. and White, M. 1997. Purification, properties and diagnosis of banana bract mosaic potyvirus and its distinction from abaca mosaic potyvirus. Phytopathology 87:698–705.
3 Sankaralingama, A., Baranwalb, V.K., Ahlawatb, Y.S., Devia, R., Ramiaha, M. 2006. RT-PCR detection and molecular characterization of Banana bract mosaic virus from the pseudostem and bract of banana. Archives of Phytopathology and Plant Protection 39(4):273-281. Archives Of Phytopathology And Plant Protection
4 Iskra-Caruana, M.L., Galzi, S. and Laboureau, N. 2008. A reliable IC One-step RT-PCR method for the detection of BBrMV to ensure safe exchange of <em>Musa</em> germplasm. Journal of Virological Methods 153(2):223-231.