Bananas on the brink? Fruit faces extinction risk

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Scientists are racing to save bananas from a tropical disease that is threatening crops across the world.

The Panama disease, a type of fungal infection that invades the soil, is currently spreading throughout Africa and Asia. If it makes its way to South America — the biggest supplier of a type of commercially grown banana known as Cavendish — scientists fear it could spell the end for the tasty fruit.

But hope lies deep in the jungles of Madagascar, where lives a wild banana that may be able to save the species.

The Madagascan banana, an inedible fruit with large seeds in the middle of it, is somehow immune to the deadly plant disease.

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