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Director
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21 Nov 2006, 09:38
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Researchers studying the spread of the Black Plague in sixteenth-century England claim that certain people survived the epidemic because they carried a genetic mutation, known as Delta-32, that is known to prevent the bacteria that causes the Plague from overtaking the immune system. To support this hypothesis, the researchers tested the direct descendants of the residents of an English town where an unusually large proportion of people survived the Plague. More than half of these descendants tested positive for the mutation Delta-32, a figure nearly three times higher than that found in other locations.

The researchers' hypothesis is based on which of the following assumptions?

Delta-32 does not prevent a carrier from contracting any disease other than the Plague.
The Plague is not similar to other diseases caused by bacteria.
Delta-32 did not exist in its current form until the sixteenth century.
No one who tested positive for Delta-32 has ever contracted a disease caused by bacteria.
The Plague does not cause genetic mutations such as Delta-32.
If you have any questions
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Re: CR - Mmgmat - Plague [#permalink]

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21 Nov 2006, 09:44
karlfurt wrote:

Researchers studying the spread of the Black Plague in sixteenth-century England claim that certain people survived the epidemic because they carried a genetic mutation, known as Delta-32, that is known to prevent the bacteria that causes the Plague from overtaking the immune system. To support this hypothesis, the researchers tested the direct descendants of the residents of an English town where an unusually large proportion of people survived the Plague. More than half of these descendants tested positive for the mutation Delta-32, a figure nearly three times higher than that found in other locations.

The researchers' hypothesis is based on which of the following assumptions?

Delta-32 does not prevent a carrier from contracting any disease other than the Plague.
The Plague is not similar to other diseases caused by bacteria.
Delta-32 did not exist in its current form until the sixteenth century.
No one who tested positive for Delta-32 has ever contracted a disease caused by bacteria.
The Plague does not cause genetic mutations such as Delta-32.

I would bet on A.
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21 Nov 2006, 09:50
Close call between A and D.

D talks about just the bacteria and nothing specific to the bacteria which causes plague.

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Re: CR - Mmgmat - Plague [#permalink]

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21 Nov 2006, 10:16
karlfurt wrote:

Researchers studying the spread of the Black Plague in sixteenth-century England claim that certain people survived the epidemic because they carried a genetic mutation, known as Delta-32, that is known to prevent the bacteria that causes the Plague from overtaking the immune system. To support this hypothesis, the researchers tested the direct descendants of the residents of an English town where an unusually large proportion of people survived the Plague. More than half of these descendants tested positive for the mutation Delta-32, a figure nearly three times higher than that found in other locations.

The researchers' hypothesis is based on which of the following assumptions?

Delta-32 does not prevent a carrier from contracting any disease other than the Plague.

Delta 32 could not even prevent the carrier from contracting plague leave alone other diseases. OUT.

The Plague is not similar to other diseases caused by bacteria.

If the plague is similar to other diseases caused by bacteria it would be difficult to know whether it was the plague that killed or some other disease caused by the bacteria. Also, since delta 32 works to inhibit the bacteria from helping plague weaken the immune system - identifying that the patient was suffereing from PLAGUE would become the critical starting point for the delta 32 hypothesis to work.

Thus it must be assumed that the plague was distinct from other diseases caused by bacteria.

Delta-32 did not exist in its current form until the sixteenth century.

Delta 32 was a MUTATION of an existing gene - so before the advent of DELTA 32, it was only the gene that had existed. OUT

No one who tested positive for Delta-32 has ever contracted a disease caused by bacteria.

This doesnt talk about the plague and hence cant be assumed.

The Plague does not cause genetic mutations such as Delta-32.

Even if the plague cause delta 32, still the argument says delta 32 prevented the bacteria from allowing plague to overcome immune system. The argument would still hold. So cant be assumed.

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21 Nov 2006, 10:30
E for me.
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21 Nov 2006, 12:34
a tentative A
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21 Nov 2006, 16:43
If the Delta thing shields people from contacting a particular disease it doesnt mean it can stop other forms of disease caused by the same bacteria.

A should be it
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21 Nov 2006, 17:38
If D32 prevents a person from contracting other diseases, then there is another reason that a large proportion of people in a town survived - they carried some genetic mutation that shielded them from contracting plague AND other diseases. D32 doesnt necessarily prevent plague - Argument falls apart.

Ans = A

OA???
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21 Nov 2006, 18:10
E !
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21 Nov 2006, 20:22
Reverse Causality - Give me E!
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Re: CR - Mmgmat - Plague [#permalink]

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21 Nov 2006, 23:59

Researchers studying the spread of the Black Plague in sixteenth-century England claim that certain people survived the epidemic because they carried a genetic mutation, known as Delta-32, that is known to prevent the bacteria that causes the Plague from overtaking the immune system. To support this hypothesis, the researchers tested the direct descendants of the residents of an English town where an unusually large proportion of people survived the Plague. More than half of these descendants tested positive for the mutation Delta-32, a figure nearly three times higher than that found in other locations.

The researchers' hypothesis is based on which of the following assumptions?

Delta-32 does not prevent a carrier from contracting any disease other than the Plague. This is not assumed The Plague is not similar to other diseases caused by bacteria. No comparision is done Delta-32 did not exist in its current form until the sixteenth century. No mention No one who tested positive for Delta-32 has ever contracted a disease caused by bacteria. Not assumed The Plague does not cause genetic mutations such as Delta-32
This is assumed. Classic cause effect senario . resercher says plaque is prevented by delta 32 He assumes tha t plaque doesnot cause delta 32
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Re: CR - Mmgmat - Plague [#permalink]

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22 Nov 2006, 01:25
karlfurt wrote:

Researchers studying the spread of the Black Plague in sixteenth-century England claim that certain people survived the epidemic because they carried a genetic mutation, known as Delta-32, that is known to prevent the bacteria that causes the Plague from overtaking the immune system. To support this hypothesis, the researchers tested the direct descendants of the residents of an English town where an unusually large proportion of people survived the Plague. More than half of these descendants tested positive for the mutation Delta-32, a figure nearly three times higher than that found in other locations.

The researchers' hypothesis is based on which of the following assumptions?

Delta-32 does not prevent a carrier from contracting any disease other than the Plague.
The Plague is not similar to other diseases caused by bacteria.
Delta-32 did not exist in its current form until the sixteenth century.
No one who tested positive for Delta-32 has ever contracted a disease caused by bacteria.
The Plague does not cause genetic mutations such as Delta-32.

It has to be E.
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Re: CR - Mmgmat - Plague [#permalink]

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22 Nov 2006, 03:04
karlfurt wrote:

Researchers studying the spread of the Black Plague in sixteenth-century England claim that certain people survived the epidemic because they carried a genetic mutation, known as Delta-32, that is known to prevent the bacteria that causes the Plague from overtaking the immune system. To support this hypothesis, the researchers tested the direct descendants of the residents of an English town where an unusually large proportion of people survived the Plague. More than half of these descendants tested positive for the mutation Delta-32, a figure nearly three times higher than that found in other locations.

The researchers' hypothesis is based on which of the following assumptions?

Delta-32 does not prevent a carrier from contracting any disease other than the Plague.
The Plague is not similar to other diseases caused by bacteria.
Delta-32 did not exist in its current form until the sixteenth century.
No one who tested positive for Delta-32 has ever contracted a disease caused by bacteria.
The Plague does not cause genetic mutations such as Delta-32.

Hypothesis: Certain people survived the epidemic because they carried a genetic mutation, known as Delta-32

What happens if the Plague casused genetic mutation? Then genetic mutation can be seen in people afflicted with Plague. And the evidence provided to support hypothesis would be weak. Hypothesis that genetic mutation prevented the Plague bacteria would not be valid, because plague came before mutation. If we look this way, E can be the answer.

What if the Plague in one generation caused mutation in the descendants of this generation? Is n't it possible that this mutation helped them prevent Plague? And it is probable that genes did nt carry every attribute from one generation to next. And that is the reason only half of the descendants have tested positive for genetic mutation. (This confirms to Gregor Mendel's findings on the immediate next generation. No?)

This is just like pests growing resistance to pesticides. Pesticide is the Plague in the above argument. We all agree that pesticides create resistance among pests. Who knows...the Plague might have created the genetic mutation. Hence, E need not be the answer.

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22 Nov 2006, 07:34
Here are the OA and OE, with which I don't agree. For the same reasons some of you already gave.

OA E

Quote:
The researchers claim that Delta-32 prevents its carriers from contracting the Plague. They support this claim by noting that a strikingly large percentage of descendants of Plague survivors carry the mutation. We are asked to find an assumption underlying the claim.

(A) The argument is specific to the relationship between Delta-32 and resistance to the Plague. Other diseases are irrelevant.

(B) Again, the argument is specific to the relationship between Delta-32 and resistance to the Plague. Other diseases are irrelevant.

(C) Delta-32 may have existed in its current form before the sixteenth century and the merit of the argument would not change.

(D) The argument does not claim that Delta-32 prevents all bacteria-caused disease.

(E) CORRECT. The researchers claim that Delta-32 prevented its carriers from contracting the Plague on the basis of its presence in descendants of Plague survivors. But it is theoretically possible that these descendants carry the mutation Delta-32 because the Plague mutated the genes of their ancestors. In order to claim that the mutation prevented the Plague, we must assume that the Plague did not cause the mutation Delta-32.
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23 Nov 2006, 00:10
E 2.

denial test: if E is wrong, then the plague caused the mutation. then the cause and effect is wrong. so the argument fails. hence E.
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23 Nov 2006, 02:01
tennis_ball wrote:
E 2.

denial test: if E is wrong, then the plague caused the mutation. then the cause and effect is wrong. so the argument fails. hence E.

The point is that Delta-32 prevent the bacteria that causes the Plague from overtaking the immune system.

The plague can cause the mutation which in return protects the individual. Thus the conclusion still stands. So it cannot be an assumption.
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23 Nov 2006, 08:41
karlfurt wrote:
tennis_ball wrote:
E 2.

denial test: if E is wrong, then the plague caused the mutation. then the cause and effect is wrong. so the argument fails. hence E.

The point is that Delta-32 prevent the bacteria that causes the Plague from overtaking the immune system.

The plague can cause the mutation which in return protects the individual. Thus the conclusion still stands. So it cannot be an assumption.

Karl - I will attempt to explain my understanding after reading the OE.

I think the argument hinges around one principal fact - the finding of delta 32 in the CURRENT GENERATION - is used to support the hypothesis that it was delta 32 that prevented plague BACK IN THE SIXTEENTH CENTURY.

What happens if the plague mutated the genes of the ancestors and the delta 32 that we NOW see is a result of that MUTATION? (this is the denial test). It is possible then that DELTA 32 was not at all present during sixteenth century folks but was passed on to the later generations as a result of the mutations caused by the plague..
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23 Nov 2006, 16:30
dwivedys wrote:
karlfurt wrote:
tennis_ball wrote:
E 2.

denial test: if E is wrong, then the plague caused the mutation. then the cause and effect is wrong. so the argument fails. hence E.

The point is that Delta-32 prevent the bacteria that causes the Plague from overtaking the immune system.

The plague can cause the mutation which in return protects the individual. Thus the conclusion still stands. So it cannot be an assumption.

Karl - I will attempt to explain my understanding after reading the OE.

I think the argument hinges around one principal fact - the finding of delta 32 in the CURRENT GENERATION - is used to support the hypothesis that it was delta 32 that prevented plague BACK IN THE SIXTEENTH CENTURY.

What happens if the plague mutated the genes of the ancestors and the delta 32 that we NOW see is a result of that MUTATION? (this is the denial test). It is possible then that DELTA 32 was not at all present during sixteenth century folks but was passed on to the later generations as a result of the mutations caused by the plague..

I understand well why E could be the correct answer, but I still think that the makers have forgotten something.
What you're talking about is a mutation occuring later, during later generation inheriting the mutated genes of their ancestors.
First, we could believe that the people contracting the plague have died, so didn't transmit the gene.
Second, your case can be feasible. But that doesn't make invalid my hypothesis that the mutation could occur during the same generation and protect the individual after few days, few weeks. Maybe medically it is not possible but in the gmat frame....
I dont know if I was clear and it's late now, half past one, i'm tired!
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23 Nov 2006, 16:53
E
Quote:
tennis_ball wrote:
E 2.

denial test: if E is wrong, then the plague caused the mutation. then the cause and effect is wrong. so the argument fails. hence E.

23 Nov 2006, 16:53
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