Antagonistic activity of bacteria from wild honey against Colletotrichum musae, and testing of wild honey as biopesticide spray to control banana anthracnose


  • Mark Paul Selda Rivarez University of the Philippines Los Baños
  • Elizabeth P. Parac Caraga State University
  • Niño R. Laurel University of the Philippines Los Baños
  • Benjamin V. Cunanan University of the Philippines Los Baños, Los Baños
  • Angelie B. Magarro University of the Philippines Los Baños
  • Shajara Fatima M. Dimasingkil Mindanao State University-Maguindanao



Bacillus, Banana Anthracnose, Biological Control, Colletotrichum musae, Lactobacillus, Wild Honey.


Anthracnose is a foliar and fruit disease caused by Colletotrichum spp. affecting a wide range of crops. Infection occurs early followed by quiescence in fruits, such as in banana, where chemical-based pesticides are used as a dependable fungal control for many years. There is an increasing need for a safe control and as implicated in the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010 (RA 10068) in the Philippines. This scenario drove the use of alternative pest control such as the use of biologicals and natural products. In this study, seven bacteria were isolated from wild honey, produced by Apis mellifera, wherein four (BC2, BC3, BC6 and BC7) were found to be an effective antagonist against Colletotrichum musae in in vitro conditions. These bacteria were identified to belong to the genus Lactobacillus spp. (BC2, BC3, BC7) and Bacillus spp. (BC6) based on sugar utilization tests, morphological and cultural growth in PDPA. For the in vivo test, different dilutions of wild honey were used and it was found out that lower concentrations were effective as biopesticide spray to prevent anthracnose infection. Lastly, we report herewith the first isolation of bacteria with biological control potential from wild honey, and to apply the raw or natural product as biopesticide in postharvest fruits.


Download data is not yet available.


ACEDO, A.L., BENETIZ, M.M. and MILLAN, L.A. Heat treatment effects on ripening and disease infection of Philippine bananas and mangoes. Proc. 4th Int. Conf. on Postharvest. Acta Horticulturae. 2001, 553, 417-419.

AL ZAEMEY, A.B., MAGAN, N. and THOMPSON, A.K. Studies on the effect of fruit-coating polymers and organic acids on growth of Colletotrichum musae in vitro and on postharvest control of anthracnose of bananas. Mycological Research. 1993, 97(12), 1463-1468.

ALVINDIA, D.G., KOBAYASHI, T., YAGUCHI, Y. and NATSUAKI, K.T. Symptoms and the associated fungi of postharvest diseases on non-chemical bananas imported in the Philippines. Japanese Journal of Tropical Agriculture. 2000, 44(2), 87-93.

ALVINDIA, D.G., KOBAYASHI, T. and NATSUAKI, K.T. The aerial and fruit surface populations of fungi in nonchemical banana production in the Philippines. Journal of General Plant Pathology. 2006, 72, 257-260.

BAZIE, S., AYALEW, A. and WOLDETSADIK, K. Integrated management of postharvest banana anthracnose (Colletotrichum musae) through plant extracts and hot water treatment. Crop Protection. 2014, 66, 14-18.

BELLOWS, T.S. and FISHER, T.W. (Eds.). Handbook of biological control. California: Academic Press, 2014.

BOUHLALI, E.D.T., et al. Evaluation of antioxidant, antibacterial and antifungal activities of eleven monofloral honey samples collected from Morocco. Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research. 2016, 8(3), 299-306.

BRENNER, D.J., KRIEG, N.R. and STALEY, J.T. Bergey’s Manual of Systematic Bacteriology. Volume Two: Proteobacteria, Part B: Gammaproteobacteria. 2nd ed. California: Springer Publications, 2004.

CAMPBELL, R. Biological control of microbial plant pathogens. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989.

CHUANG, T.Y. and YANG, H.R. Biological control of banana anthracnose. Plant Pathology Bulletin. 1993, 2, 71-77.

DE COSTA, D.M. and ERABADUPITIYA, H.R.U.T. An integrated method to control postharvest diseases of banana using a member of the Burkholderia cepacia complex. Postharvest Biology and Technology. 2005, 36, 31-39.

FU, G., et al. Characterization of a bacterial biocontrol strain B106 and its efficacy in controlling banana leaf spot and post-harvest anthracnose diseases. Biological Control. 2010, 55, 1-10.

GNANAMANICKAM, S.S. Biological control of crop diseases. New York: Marcel Dekker, Inc., 2002.

JANISIEWICZ, W.J. and KORSTEN, L. Biological control of postharvest diseases of fruits. Annual Reviews Phytopathology. 2002, 40, 411-441.

JIJAKLI, M.H. and LEPOIVRE, P. Biological control of postharvest Botrytis cinerea and Penicillium expansum on apples. Biological Contorl of Diseases. 1993, 16, 106-110.

JIJAKLI, M.H. and LEPOIVRE, P. Characterization of an exo- β-1,3- glucanase produced by Pichia anomala strain k, antagonist of Botrytis cinerea on apples. Phytopathology. 1998, 88, 335-343.

JONES, D. Diseases of banana, abaca and enset. Wallingford: CABI Publications, 1999.

JENSE, J.D. Phytobacteriology: principles and practice. Wallingford: CABI Publications, 2005.

KIM, P.I. and CHUNG, K-C. Production of an antifungal protein for control of Colletotrichum lagenarium by Bacillus amyloliquefaciens MET0908. FEMS Microbiology Letters. 2004, 234, 117-183.

LASSOIS, L., DE LAPEYRE DE BELLAIRE, L. and JIJAKLI, M.H. Biological control of crown rot of bananas with Pichia anomala strain K and Candida oleophila strain O. Biological Control. 2008, 45, 410-418.

LIM, J., LIM, T.H. and CHA, B. Isolation and Identification of Colletotrichum musae from Imported Bananas. Plant Pathology Journal. 2002, 18(3), 161-164.

MADRAS-MAJEWSKA, B., et al. Comparison of selected quality characteristics of domestic and Thailand multifloral honeys. Medycyna Weterinaryjna. 2017, 72(10), 620-626. https://doi:10.21521/mw.5573

MAHADTANAPUK, S., SANGUANSERMSRI, M. and CUTLER, R. Control of Anthracnose Caused by Colletotrichum musae on Curcuma alismatifolia Gagnep. using Antagonistic Bacillus spp. American Journal Agricultural and Biological Science. 2007, 2(2), 54-61.

OLOFSSON, T.C., et al. Lactic acid bacterial symbionts in honeybees – an unknown key to honey’s antimicrobial and therapeutic activities. International Wound Journal. 2016, 13, 668-679.

PEERAN, M.F., et al. Development and evaluation of water-in-oil formulation of Pseudomonas fluorescens (FP7) against Colletotrichum musae incitant of anthracnose disease in banana. European Journal of Plant Pathology. 2014, 138, 167-180.

POSTMASTER, A., KUO, J., SIVASITHAMPARAM, K. and TURNER, D.W. Interaction between Colletotrichum musae and antagonistic microorganisms on the surface of banana leaf discs. Scientia Horticulturae. 1997, 71, 113-125.

ROKOP, Z.P., HORTON, M.A. and NEWTON, I.L.G. Interaction between co-occuring lactic acid bacteria in honeybee hives. Applied Environmental Biology. 2015, 81(20), 7261-7270.

SANDI, N.A. and SALASIA, S.I.O. Alternative antibiotics source from symbionts of lactic acid bacteria inside stomachs of honeybees (Apis mellifera and Apis dorsata) against multiresistant antibiotics pathogenic bacteria. Research Journal of Microbiology. 2016, 11, 93-100.

SIVAKUMAR, D., et al. Effect of the combined application of chitosan and carbonate salts on the incidence of anthracnose and on the quality of papaya during storage. Journal of Horticultural Science and Biotechnology. 2005, 80, 447e452.

SU, Y.-Y., et al. Epitypification of Colletotrichum musae, the causative agent of banana anthracnose. Mycoscience. 2011, 52, 376-382.

SUTTON, B.C. and WATERSTON, J.M. Descriptions of pathogenic fungi and bacteria No. 222. Surrey: Commonwealth Mycological Institute, 1970.

SWAIN, M.R. and RAY, R.C. Biocontrol and other beneficial activities of Bacillus subtilis isolated from cowdung microflora. Microbiology Research. 2016, 164, 121–130.

VAN DEN BOSCH, R., MESSENGER, P.S. and GUTIERREZ, A.P. An Introduction to biological control. New York: Springer Science+Business Media, 1985.

WANG, M., et al. Bacillus in the guts of honeybees (Apis melliefera; Hymenoptera: Apidae) mediated changes in amylase values. European Journal of Entomology. 2015, 112, 619-624.

WILLIAMSON, S.M., et al. Evaluation of Pseudomonas syringae strain ESC-11 for biocontrol of crown rot and anthracnose of banana. Biological Control. 2008, 46, 279-286.

ZAKARIA, L., SAHAK, S., ZAKARIA, M. and SALLEH, B. Characterisation of Colletotrichum Species Associated with Anthracnose of Banana. Tropical Life Science Research. 2009, 20, 119-125.




How to Cite

RIVAREZ, M.P.S.., PARAC, E.P., NIÑO R. LAUREL, BENJAMIN V. CUNANAN, ANGELIE B. MAGARRO and DIMASINGKIL, S.F.M., 2021. Antagonistic activity of bacteria from wild honey against Colletotrichum musae, and testing of wild honey as biopesticide spray to control banana anthracnose. Bioscience Journal [online], vol. 37, pp. e37089. [Accessed14 August 2022]. DOI 10.14393/BJ-v37n0a2021-49921. Available from:



Agricultural Sciences