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A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants

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A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants. Agronomists studying the growth of this herb have discovered that it produces large amounts of histidine, an amino acid that, in test - tube solutions, renders these metals chemically inert. Hence, the herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

In evaluating the argument, it would be most important to determine which of the following?

(A) Whether the herb can thrive in soil that does not have high concentrations of the toxic metals.
(B) Whether others of the closely related group of plants also produce histidine in large quantities.
(C) Whether the herb's high level of histidine production is associated with an unusually low level of production of some other amino acid
(D) Whether growing the herb in soil with high concentrations of the metals will, over time, reduce their concentrations in the soil.
(E) whether the concentration of histidine in the growing herb declines as the plant approaches maturity
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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harishbiyani8888 wrote:
A certain cultivated herb is one a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants. Agronomists tsudying the growth of this herb have discovered that it produces large amounts of histidine, an amino acid that, in test - tube solutions, renders these metals chemically inert. Hence, the herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

In evaluating the argument, it would be most important to determine which of the following?

A) Whether the herb can thrive in soil that does not have high concentrations of the toxic metals.
B) Whether others of the closely related group of plants also produce histidine in large quantities.
C) Whether the herb's high level of histidine production is associated with an unusually low level of production of some other amino acid
D) Whether growing the herb in soil with high concentrations of the metals will, over time, reduce their concentrations in the soil.
E) whether the concentration of histidine in the growing herb declines as the plant approaches maturity


(B). Here's why -

(A) -> Whether it thrives in other soil or not is not relevant to finding out if it thrives in metal rich soil because of histidine. This option is out of scope to what's asked.
(B) -> If true, will give us confidence that histidine is indeed a critical component of surviving the toxic metal rich soil. This would indicate that the mentioned herb has something common with other plants that thrive in the patch. Most likely, if this is the case, the common factor is the one that helps them survive.
(C) -> Irrelevant. Consider two cases - A. some other amino acid is produced in large quantities - it may be a compound not related to toxic survival (it could be something that causes leaves to grow bigger, for example). B. some other amino acid is produced in unusually low quantities - this does not help the case of plant surviving because of histidine. What other acids do, or their quantities is not helpful in finding if histidine is the key factor for survival.
(D) -> This is tricky. Suppose metal concentration is reduced over time. Also suppose that this is due to neutralizing effect of histidine. All this says is that the plant reduces concentration of metal. Doesn't say anything about whether histidine is the critical factor in survival. It could be anything else. The effect histidine has on the metal concentration may not be key to the plant's survival. Any other factor (say a toxic filtering mechanism in the plant's roots) may be the most critical. So, histidine's effect on soil is not the most helpful in finding out if histidine is THE most important feature that helps survival.
(E) -> Age of the plant is not in scope for the argument and is not needed to find if histidine is the true savior.

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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New post 07 Sep 2015, 18:30
I have one doubt.

We have to evaluate that "Hence, the herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils."
.

Argument clearly states that "A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants".

The information in option B provides that others of closely related groups produces the amino acids. How does this information impact the conclusion? if you say no, this clearly states that the other group doesn't have capability to grow in metal rich area. but it will not affect that herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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sun01 wrote:
I have one doubt.

We have to evaluate that "Hence, the herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils."
.

Argument clearly states that "A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants".

The information in option B provides that others of closely related groups produces the amino acids. How does this information impact the conclusion? if you say no, this clearly states that the other group doesn't have capability to grow in metal rich area. but it will not affect that herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.


You are right but we have to go with the best answer from the options provided.

You could argue for (D), perhaps, but note that the lowering of metal levels could be due to some other chemical, say chemical X, and not histidine (although histidine is plausible too). There is not enough evidence to conclude that. In any event, we are asked the key factor of why it survives, not what reduces metal levels. The other options are even more irrelevant.

Point is, we should choose the best from available options. It may not be the universally correct choice, but we should choose the one that is most correct from the ones available.
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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants. Agronomists studying the growth of this herb have discovered that it produces large amounts of histidine, an amino acid that, in test-tube solutions, renders these metals chemically inert. Hence, the herb’s high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

In evaluating the argument, it would be most important to determine which of the following?

(A) Whether the herb can thrive in soil that does not have high concentrations of the toxic metals
(B) Whether others of the closely related group of plants also produce histidine in large quantities
(C) Whether the herb’s high level of histidine production is associated with an unusually low level of production of some other amino acid
(D) Whether growing the herb in soil with high concentrations of the metals will, over time, reduce their concentrations in the soil
(E) Whether the concentration of histidine in the growing herb declines as the plant approaches maturity


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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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sun01 wrote:
I have one doubt.

We have to evaluate that "Hence, the herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils."
.

Argument clearly states that "A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants".

The information in option B provides that others of closely related groups produces the amino acids. How does this information impact the conclusion? if you say no, this clearly states that the other group doesn't have capability to grow in metal rich area. but it will not affect that herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.



I think you have misunderstood the argument a bit. Here is what it says:

Argument:

- A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants.

So this herb is one of a group of plants. All plants in this group of plants thrive in soil with high concentration of metals. These metals are toxic to most other plants.

- Agronomists studying the growth of this herb have discovered that it produces large amounts of histidine, an amino acid that, in test - tube solutions, renders these metals chemically inert.

We are given that this herb produces histidine which makes these metals inactive.

Conclusion: The herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

We don't really know what makes the herb flourish in high metal soil. It could be histidine or it could be that it produces 10 other chemicals which allow it to flourish in metal rich soil. Since all these plants are closely related and only they are the ones who thrive in metal rich soils, it is likely that they have some common feature that helps them thrive. We are guessing its histidine. How do we find out whether our claim holds value?
If we evaluate whether the other plants in the group also produce histidine, it helps us. How? If other plants also produce lots of histidine, it becomes more likely that histidine is the one which helps these plants thrive. If other plants do not produce histidine, it becomes likely that they all produce some other chemical which helps them thrive.
Hence (B) helps us evaluate "what is it that allows this herb to grow in metal-rich soils?"

Answer (B)
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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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New post 08 Sep 2015, 22:15
Nice explanation. Thanks.

I missed the highlighted part to think that you mentioned in your post.

We don't really know what makes the herb flourish in high metal soil. It could be histidine or it could be that it produces 10 other chemicals which allow it to flourish in metal rich soil. Since all these plants are closely related and only they are the ones who thrive in metal rich soils, it is likely that they have some common feature that helps them thrive. We are guessing its histidine. How do we find out whether our claim holds value

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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New post 08 Sep 2015, 22:56
Hi,

A straight B.

As per the premise.. the plant is part of a group of plants.

conclusion:the herb’s high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

We need an option that strengthens this claim. So if we can prove that the other plants of the same group that survive in the soil also produce the same chemical.. then the conclusion will be established.

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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Responding to a pm:

Quote:
Can you please explain why 'E' cannot be the answer. If the concentration of histidine decreases with maturity then we may be conclude that it is not because of the histidine but because of some other substance, and if the concentration does not decrease then it is because of the histidine..


(E) doesn't help us evaluate the argument. Even if the concentration of histidine decreases after the plants mature, histidine could certainly be that substance which helps them grow from saplings into mature plants on metal rich soil. Also, perhaps the plants need less histidine to handle the metals after they mature - we do not know. Knowing whether the histidine levels decrease as the plants mature cannot help us judge whether histidine helps them survive in metal rich soils.
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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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New post 17 Sep 2015, 03:43
A herb thrives in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants.
this herb have produces large amounts of histidine,
histidine is an amino acid that, in test - tube solutions, renders these metals chemically inert.
Hence, the herb's high histidine production allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

In evaluating the argument, it would be most important to determine which of the following?

A) Whether the herb can thrive in soil that does not have high concentrations of the toxic metals.
(We are discussing only metal-rich soils here. others OFS)

B) Whether others of the closely related group of plants also produce histidine in large quantities.
(If yes, then that does not explain why only this herb survives, If no, that strengthens the conclusion. This helps in evaluating the argument.)

C) Whether the herb's high level of histidine production is associated with an unusually low level of production of some other amino acid
(what the histidine production does(Allows growth) is important no to what it is associated with. This gives no proper info.)

D) Whether growing the herb in soil with high concentrations of the metals will, over time, reduce their concentrations in the soil.
(here herbs render these metals chemically inert. But if we accept above statement, after certain amount of time others herbs also should survive in the same soil. This info does not help)

E) whether the concentration of histidine in the growing herb declines as the plant approaches maturity
(This is not our point of concern. OFS)
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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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New post 10 Nov 2015, 07:07
B-even if other plants in the group produce histidine, it does not confirm that histidine is the main factor, there could be sth else common to them and is the main player (they may have one/more similar characteristics).
Agains E says whether histidine is finished up or not may be important, we have no idea about it, the herb may even produce histd while growing maturity, Or not.

B is not very satisfactory, but others are worse

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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Premise : X herb grows in metal-rich soil just fine. because of amino acid prodn but not other plants of the same group. why? it is assumed that they don't produce histidine.

conclusion -> high histidine production helps herb to grow in hostile enviornment.

Prethinking:

What if other plants also produce histidine. if yes, then we can definetely say its not the case. it's some other factor. if no, then ok, it might be histidine thing.

Worst case scenario, even if other plants don't produce histidine, it is some other factor which we dont know yet leads to growth of X herb in metal rich sol. some temp thing. or something else. (But here we are considering that all other factor are same for both of them)

so straghtaway B.

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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New post 05 Aug 2016, 08:19
VeritasPrepKarishma wrote:
sun01 wrote:
I have one doubt.

We have to evaluate that "Hence, the herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils."
.

Argument clearly states that "A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants".

The information in option B provides that others of closely related groups produces the amino acids. How does this information impact the conclusion? if you say no, this clearly states that the other group doesn't have capability to grow in metal rich area. but it will not affect that herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.



I think you have misunderstood the argument a bit. Here is what it says:

Argument:

- A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants.

So this herb is one of a group of plants. All plants in this group of plants thrive in soil with high concentration of metals. These metals are toxic to most other plants.

- Agronomists studying the growth of this herb have discovered that it produces large amounts of histidine, an amino acid that, in test - tube solutions, renders these metals chemically inert.

We are given that this herb produces histidine which makes these metals inactive.

Conclusion: The herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

We don't really know what makes the herb flourish in high metal soil. It could be histidine or it could be that it produces 10 other chemicals which allow it to flourish in metal rich soil. Since all these plants are closely related and only they are the ones who thrive in metal rich soils, it is likely that they have some common feature that helps them thrive. We are guessing its histidine. How do we find out whether our claim holds value?
If we evaluate whether the other plants in the group also produce histidine, it helps us. How? If other plants also produce lots of histidine, it becomes more likely that histidine is the one which helps these plants thrive. If other plants do not produce histidine, it becomes likely that they all produce some other chemical which helps them thrive.
Hence (B) helps us evaluate "what is it that allows this herb to grow in metal-rich soils?"

Answer (B)


Hi Karishma,

Can you help me with the following confusion.

I was confused between B and C.
My confusion with C is that if histidine production is associated with low levels of production of other substances then maybe low level of other substances are providing protection against metals and not histidine. Can you please show me how to eliminate this?

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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VeritasPrepKarishma wrote:
sun01 wrote:
I have one doubt.

We have to evaluate that "Hence, the herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils."
.

Argument clearly states that "A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants".

The information in option B provides that others of closely related groups produces the amino acids. How does this information impact the conclusion? if you say no, this clearly states that the other group doesn't have capability to grow in metal rich area. but it will not affect that herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.



I think you have misunderstood the argument a bit. Here is what it says:

Argument:

- A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants.

So this herb is one of a group of plants. All plants in this group of plants thrive in soil with high concentration of metals. These metals are toxic to most other plants.

- Agronomists studying the growth of this herb have discovered that it produces large amounts of histidine, an amino acid that, in test - tube solutions, renders these metals chemically inert.

We are given that this herb produces histidine which makes these metals inactive.

Conclusion: The herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

We don't really know what makes the herb flourish in high metal soil. It could be histidine or it could be that it produces 10 other chemicals which allow it to flourish in metal rich soil. Since all these plants are closely related and only they are the ones who thrive in metal rich soils, it is likely that they have some common feature that helps them thrive. We are guessing its histidine. How do we find out whether our claim holds value?
If we evaluate whether the other plants in the group also produce histidine, it helps us. How? If other plants also produce lots of histidine, it becomes more likely that histidine is the one which helps these plants thrive. If other plants do not produce histidine, it becomes likely that they all produce some other chemical which helps them thrive.
Hence (B) helps us evaluate "what is it that allows this herb to grow in metal-rich soils?"

Answer (B)


Hi Karishma,

Can you help me with the following confusion.

I was confused between B and C.
My confusion with C is that if histidine production is associated with low levels of production of other substances then maybe low level of other substances are providing protection against metals and not histidine. Can you please show me how to eliminate this?


We are trying to establish a connection between histidine and metals. (B) helps us in evaluating that connection as discussed in my explanation above.

C) Whether the herb's high level of histidine production is associated with an unusually low level of production of some other amino acid

Here, we are trying to connect histidine to "some other amino acid". We don't know if "some other amino acid" will have any connection with metals. Shouldn't we instead try to connect Histidine to metals directly?
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New post 16 Nov 2016, 13:24
Why is E incorrect?

It would be great if anyone can elaborate all the answer choices.....
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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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New post 21 Nov 2016, 20:12
Hi Abhishek,

Can you please explain this question

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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TeeCee wrote:
Why is E incorrect?

It would be great if anyone can elaborate all the answer choices.....


Histidine production over the life cycle is not related to the conclusion. The conclusion is whether Histidine is the factor that allows these planst to survive in metal rich soils.

Option B:
Answer "yes": If other closely related plants (who grow in metal rich soils) also produce Histidine, then Histidine could be the factor for the survival of these plants in metal rich soils.
Answer "no": Histidine is not the factor that causes these plants to survive in metal rich soils - there should be some other factor.

"Yes" supports the conclusion and "no" opposes the conclusion. Therefore B is the correct choice.
(This yes / no approach is a basic technique to solve evaluate questions - if you cannot eliminate just by observation, use it for the other choices yourself. Please post again if you have doubts with a particular choice.)

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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New post 24 Dec 2016, 06:38
Thank you for the reason you provided for <D>

HardWorkBeatsAll wrote:
harishbiyani8888 wrote:
A certain cultivated herb is one a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants. Agronomists tsudying the growth of this herb have discovered that it produces large amounts of histidine, an amino acid that, in test - tube solutions, renders these metals chemically inert. Hence, the herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

In evaluating the argument, it would be most important to determine which of the following?

A) Whether the herb can thrive in soil that does not have high concentrations of the toxic metals.
B) Whether others of the closely related group of plants also produce histidine in large quantities.
C) Whether the herb's high level of histidine production is associated with an unusually low level of production of some other amino acid
D) Whether growing the herb in soil with high concentrations of the metals will, over time, reduce their concentrations in the soil.
E) whether the concentration of histidine in the growing herb declines as the plant approaches maturity


(B). Here's why -

(A) -> Whether it thrives in other soil or not is not relevant to finding out if it thrives in metal rich soil because of histidine. This option is out of scope to what's asked.
(B) -> If true, will give us confidence that histidine is indeed a critical component of surviving the toxic metal rich soil. This would indicate that the mentioned herb has something common with other plants that thrive in the patch. Most likely, if this is the case, the common factor is the one that helps them survive.
(C) -> Irrelevant. Consider two cases - A. some other amino acid is produced in large quantities - it may be a compound not related to toxic survival (it could be something that causes leaves to grow bigger, for example). B. some other amino acid is produced in unusually low quantities - this does not help the case of plant surviving because of histidine. What other acids do, or their quantities is not helpful in finding if histidine is the key factor for survival.
(D) -> This is tricky. Suppose metal concentration is reduced over time. Also suppose that this is due to neutralizing effect of histidine. All this says is that the plant reduces concentration of metal. Doesn't say anything about whether histidine is the critical factor in survival. It could be anything else. The effect histidine has on the metal concentration may not be key to the plant's survival. Any other factor (say a toxic filtering mechanism in the plant's roots) may be the most critical. So, histidine's effect on soil is not the most helpful in finding out if histidine is THE most important feature that helps survival.
(E) -> Age of the plant is not in scope for the argument and is not needed to find if histidine is the true savior.

If this helps, help me with kudos! :)

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Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants [#permalink]

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New post 03 Feb 2017, 07:45
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harishbiyani8888 wrote:
A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants that thrive in soil with high concentrations of metals that are toxic to most other plants. Agronomists studying the growth of this herb have discovered that it produces large amounts of histidine, an amino acid that, in test - tube solutions, renders these metals chemically inert. Hence, the herb's high histidine production must be the key feature that allows it to grow in metal-rich soils.

In evaluating the argument, it would be most important to determine which of the following?

A) Whether the herb can thrive in soil that does not have high concentrations of the toxic metals.
B) Whether others of the closely related group of plants also produce histidine in large quantities.
C) Whether the herb's high level of histidine production is associated with an unusually low level of production of some other amino acid
D) Whether growing the herb in soil with high concentrations of the metals will, over time, reduce their concentrations in the soil.
E) whether the concentration of histidine in the growing herb declines as the plant approaches maturity

Edit: corrected spelling mistake & added a missing "of"



Conclusion - High Histidine production is responsible for the fact that the herb can grow in metal rich soils.

Pre thinking the assumptions that the author is making -
1. No other feature than the one mentioned can help the plant in thriving in metal rich soil.
2. This feature of high histidine production is present across all the plants in the group
3. The conditions under the soil are no different to the ones when histidine renders the toxic metals inert in Test tube solutions and the soil conditions support this process.


Looking at the choices .

A - whether the herb can survive in other environments has no bearing on the validity of the conclusion

B - Correct - It is in line with our Pre thinking
If the answer is No , then it slightly increases our belief in the fact that there could be some other factor helping this plant survive in metal rich soils
If the answer is yes , it strengthens our belief that high histdine production is reponsible for the herb thriving in the metal rich soil

C - relationship with other amino acid is out of scope

D - This one is tricky - Why ? It tends to point out that there would be another reason that the herb thrives in the soil i. e ,the herb absorbs the metal overtime.
Lets check the answers to the question
Yes - It could mean that Histidine is decreasing the concentration through inerting the metal OR it could mean that the absorption is helping the herb thrive - NOT CLEAR
Moreover , we are not given how much concentration is reduced . May be it reduces by just .1 % , thus making the absorption useless or it reduces by 99 % thus making the absorption useful.
This choice gives us an ambiguous answer

E - even if concentration decreases , this does not clearly show how the impact of histidine would be weakened or strengthened with decreasing concentration.

Kudos if you liked the explanation
cheers

Kudos [?]: 1 [0], given: 39

Re: A certain cultivated herb is one of a group of closely related plants   [#permalink] 03 Feb 2017, 07:45

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