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Difficulty: Sub 505 Level,    Long Passage,    Science,                   
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Re: All of the cells in a particular plant start out with the same [#permalink]
Hi BrightOutlookJenn

Your insights have been great! I must admit I took way too much time to read through the passage and break the same in different bits for my ease of understanding and I suffered in Q3 and 5. I was able to eliminate the most commonly picked answers but I was unable to really understand the relevance or the meaning of the actual correct answers.

In such cases and if faced with a similar situation in the actual GMAT, could you please suggest how we can tackle the same. Also this really was a complex passage for a 600 level passage IMO.

Thanks
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COVID19butGMAT20 wrote:
Hi BrightOutlookJenn

Your insights have been great! I must admit I took way too much time to read through the passage and break the same in different bits for my ease of understanding and I suffered in Q3 and 5. I was able to eliminate the most commonly picked answers but I was unable to really understand the relevance or the meaning of the actual correct answers.

In such cases and if faced with a similar situation in the actual GMAT, could you please suggest how we can tackle the same. Also this really was a complex passage for a 600 level passage IMO.

Thanks


Hey COVID19butGMAT20, I'm no expert but I've realised that it is absolutely crucial to get the main point of the passage. The things that I kept in mind while I attempting this passage was that
1. Five hormones have multiple functions
2. Oligosaccharins have specific functions
3. There is heirarchy, The five hormones probably trigger regulatory chemicals that go on to perform specific functions.

For me, It's easy to get lost in the details in scientific passages because of the heavy words. I'm not from a science background so it's something that I've struggled with in the past. I try to focus on the main point and I always keep the main point in mind. When I finished reading the passage, I had no idea about how these chemicals functioned in animals, I just knew that they follow a hierarchy.

My opinion is unqualified as I'm no expert, but I'm just sharing what I've learnt in my prep journey. Jenn's comments would obviously be much more informative and useful than mine! :)

Originally posted by MBAB123 on 24 Apr 2021, 22:41.
Last edited by MBAB123 on 15 May 2021, 04:35, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: All of the cells in a particular plant start out with the same [#permalink]
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Hi COVID19butGMAT21,

Apologies for the long delay in responding to your question.

COVID19butGMAT21 wrote:
Hi BrightOutlookJenn

Your insights have been great! I must admit I took way too much time to read through the passage and break the same in different bits for my ease of understanding and I suffered in Q3 and 5. I was able to eliminate the most commonly picked answers but I was unable to really understand the relevance or the meaning of the actual correct answers.

In such cases and if faced with a similar situation in the actual GMAT, could you please suggest how we can tackle the same. Also this really was a complex passage for a 600 level passage IMO.

Thanks


Brian123 gave some very solid advice in his response above: get clear on the main point of the passage and then make sure to keep connecting the new information to the main point. Here are some tips I can add:

*In the short term, if a passage like this comes up in the last quarter of your exam, and you realize you truly don't and aren't going to understand it, I would make the executive decision to simply guess on the three questions and then move on with the rest of your exam, focusing your time and energy where it can do more good.

*In the long term, I'll suggest some work you can do to improve your overall understanding of texts like this one.

READ MORE
You mentioned that you struggled to "really understand the relevance or the meaning of the actual correct answers". Do you find that is true with many passages about scientific topics, or perhaps biology/biochemistry specifically? My best advice in that case is to READ MORE about this type of topic. Here are some websites you might use:
https://www.sciencenews.org/
https://www.sciencedaily.com/news/ (Note here: this website often provides a short summary before the main article. Reading this summary first will help you, but you won't get that help on the GMAT. So I would suggest skipping over it and reading the article first. Then try to write your own one-sentence summary and compare it to the official one.)

Look for topics that you know NOTHING about, or that you've never read about before in English. Then get really serious about your comprehension - what's standing in the way?

GATHER VOCABULARY
If there are important vocabulary words you don't know, be sure to make note of them and study them. This is relevant for verbs, adjectives, adverbs, and general nouns. (Thinking about the above passage, a really specific noun like oligosaccharide or adjective like pleiotropic will be defined for you in the passage, but you need to already be comfortable with general nouns like gene, hierarchy, hormone, crop, shoot; verbs like differentiate; adjectives like regulatory.)

MAKE MENTAL PICTURES
If you understand all the key words, perhaps you're having trouble making a mental picture of what the text is describing. How can you make it visual for yourself? You should definitely be able to make some kind of mental visual for scientific processes; if you can't do that yet, look for videos or images (try Google images if needed) that illustrate the scientific process described in the passage. Then go back to the passage and re-read the sentences that you couldn't visualize before, now connecting the words with the images in your head.

***
I hope some of these are helpful to you. Let us know!
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Re: All of the cells in a particular plant start out with the same [#permalink]
1. According to the passage, the five well-known plant hormones are not useful in controlling the growth of crops because

(A) it is not known exactly what functions the hormones perform
(B) each hormone has various effects on plants
each has more than one effect on the growth and development of plants
(C) none of the hormones can function without the others
(D) each hormone has different effects on different kinds of plants
(E) each hormone works on only a small subset of a cell's genes at any particular time

2. The passage suggests that the place of hypothalamic hormones in the hormonal hierarchies of animals is similar to the place of which of the following in plants?

(A) plant cell walls
(B) the complement of genes in each plant cell
(C) a subset of a plant cell's gene complement
(D) the five major hormones
The pleiotropy of the five well-studied plant hormones is somewhat analogous to that of certain hormones in animal.
(E) the oligosaccharins

3. The passage suggests that which of the following is a function likely to be performed by an oligosaccharin?

(A) to stimulate a particular plant cell to become part of a plant's root system
Unlike the oligosaccharins, the five well-known plant hormones are pleiotropic rather than specific;
the five well-known plant hormones are pleiotropic
--> oligosaccharin is specific (Root system)

(B) to stimulate the walls of a particular cell to produce other oligosaccharins
pleiotropic plant hormones may actually function by activating the enzymes that release these other, more specific chemical messengers from the cell wall.
pleiotropic activating the enzymes that release chemical messengers from the cell wall

(C) to activate enzymes that release specific chemical messengers from plant cell walls
pleiotropic activating the enzymes

(D) to duplicate the gene complement in a particular plant cell
No information

(E) to produce multiple effects on a particular subsystem of plant cells
No information

4. The author mentions specific effects that auxin has on plant development in order to illustrate the

(A) point that some of the effects of plant hormones can be harmful
(B) way in which hormones are produced by plants
(C) hierarchical nature of the functioning of plant hormones
(D) differences among the best-known plant hormones
(E) concept of pleiotropy as it is exhibited by plant hormones
Auxin, stimulates the rate of cell elongation. Auxin also causes the plant to develop a vascular system

5. According to the passage, which of the following best describes a function performed by oligosaccharins?

(A) regulating the daily functioning of a plant's cells
(B) interacting with one another to produce different chemicals
(C) releasing specific chemical messengers from a plant's cell walls
pleiotropic plant hormones may actually function by activating the enzymes that release these other
(D) producing the hormones that cause plant cells to differentiate to perform different functions

(E) influencing the development of a plant's cells by controlling the expression of the cells' genes
unlike the oligosaccharins, the five well-known plant hormones are pleiotropic rather than specific,


6. The passage suggests that, unlike the pleiotropic hormones, oligosaccharins could be used effectively to

(A) trace the passage of chemicals through the walls of cells
(B) pinpoint functions of other plant hormones
(C) artificially control specific aspects of the development of crops
unlike the oligosaccharins, the five well-known plant hormones are pleiotropic rather than specific
->> oligosaccharins is specific --> Can be controlled artificially
(D) alter the complement of genes in the cells of plants
(E) alter the effects of the five major hormones on plant development

7. The author discusses animal hormones primarily in order to

(A) introduce the idea of a hierarchy of hormones
The pleiotropy of the five well-studied plant hormones is somewhat analogous to that of certain hormones in animal... In other words, there is a hierarchy of hormones.
(B) explain the effects that auxin has on plant cells
(C) contrast the functioning of plant hormones and animals hormones
(D) illustrate the way in which particular hormones affect animals
(E) explain the distinction between hormones and regulatory molecules
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Re: All of the cells in a particular plant start out with the same [#permalink]
GMATNinja

I have a confusion on Q.2 question stem. I found it ambiguous.

2. The passage suggests that the place of hypothalamic hormones in the hormonal hierarchies of animals is similar to the place of which of the following in plants?

In this the text "is similar to place", is referring to the location (of the hormones) or the function (of the hormones)?
In most explanations, of this question, functions of the hormones is talked about.

While attempting this question I narrowed the choice to Option B & D, but I inferred the question as location, and picked Option B.

Kindly help.
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rocky620 wrote:
GMATNinja

I have a confusion on Q.2 question stem. I found it ambiguous.

2. The passage suggests that the place of hypothalamic hormones in the hormonal hierarchies of animals is similar to the place of which of the following in plants?

In this the text "is similar to place", is referring to the location (of the hormones) or the function (of the hormones)?
In most explanations, of this question, functions of the hormones is talked about.

While attempting this question I narrowed the choice to Option B & D, but I inferred the question as location, and picked Option B.

Kindly help.



Yes, rocky620, I think this is simply a case in which you interpreted the word place in a different manner from the one the question seems to be asking about: the role or function of hormones makes a lot more sense. In that light, you can probably see how the explanation provided above by GMATNinja makes more sense.

If I found myself in a similar quandary on this specific question, I would ask myself whether I remembered or could locate any information about physical locations of anything hormonal from the passage. If the answer was no, I would be forced to consider a different interpretation.

Thank you for thinking to ask.

- Andrew­
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Re: All of the cells in a particular plant start out with the same [#permalink]
6. The passage suggests that, unlike the pleiotropic hormones, oligosaccharins could be used effectively to

(A) trace the passage of chemicals through the walls of cells
(B) pinpoint functions of other plant hormones
(C) artificially control specific aspects of the development of crops
(D) alter the complement of genes in the cells of plants
(E) alter the effects of the five major hormones on plant development

OFFICIAL EXPLANATION
The best answer is C. Lines 16-18 state that because each pleiotropic hormone has so many
different effects on a plant, pleiotropic hormones “are not very useful in artificially controlling the
growth of crops” (lines 17-18). In contrast, the passage indicates that oligosaccharins have specific
effects on the growth and development of plants. Thus, in comparison to the pleiotropic hormones,
oligosaccharins could potentially be effective in artificially controlling specific aspects of crop
development. Choices A, B, D, and E can be eliminated because they describe functions that are
not attributed in the passage either to the pleiotropic hormones or to oligosaccharins.
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Official Explanation


6. The passage suggests that, unlike the pleiotropic hormones, oligosaccharins could be used effectively to

Difficulty Level: 600-650

Explanation

The best answer is C. Lines 16-18 state that because each pleiotropic hormone has so many different effects on a plant, pleiotropic hormones “are not very useful in artificially controlling the growth of crops” (lines 17-18). In contrast, the passage indicates that oligosaccharins have specific effects on the growth and development of plants. Thus, in comparison to the pleiotropic hormones, oligosaccharins could potentially be effective in artificially controlling specific aspects of crop development.

Choices A, B, D, and E can be eliminated because they describe functions that are not attributed in the passage either to the pleiotropic hormones or to oligosaccharins.

Answer: C
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Explanation


7. The author discusses animal hormones primarily in order to

Difficulty Level: 500

Explanation

The author discusses animal hormones primarily in order to (A) introduce the idea of a hierarchy of hormones.

The passage initially discusses the concept of genes and how cells in plants differentiate to form different structures. It then introduces the role of chemical messengers, including hormones, in regulating this process. To further explain the concept of a hierarchy of hormones in plants, the author draws a comparison with animal hormones.

The passage explains that in animals, hormones from the hypothalamus stimulate the anterior lobe of the pituitary gland to synthesize and release various hormones that have specific effects on target organs throughout the body. This illustrates a hierarchical relationship where one hormone triggers the release of other hormones, which then have specific effects on different organs.

By discussing this hierarchy in animal hormones, the author introduces the idea that a similar hierarchy may exist in plants, as indicated by the presence of oligosaccharins that function as regulatory molecules. These oligosaccharins are released by enzymes in the cell wall and may be activated by pleiotropic plant hormones.

(A) introduce the idea of a hierarchy of hormones:
This is the correct answer. As explained earlier, the discussion of animal hormones in the passage serves to introduce the concept of a hierarchy of hormones. The passage mentions how hormones from the hypothalamus stimulate the release of different hormones in the anterior lobe of the pituitary gland, which then have specific effects on target organs throughout the body. This example illustrates the idea of a hierarchy in animal hormones.

(B) explain the effects that auxin has on plant cells:
This option is incorrect. While the passage does mention the effects of auxin on plant cells, it does not discuss animal hormones to specifically explain the effects of auxin. The focus of the passage is on contrasting the functioning of plant hormones and animal hormones.

(C) contrast the functioning of plant hormones and animal hormones:
This option is partially correct. The passage does indeed contrast the functioning of plant hormones and animal hormones by highlighting the pleiotropy of plant hormones and the hierarchical nature of certain animal hormones. However, this option does not capture the primary reason for discussing animal hormones, which is to introduce the idea of a hierarchy of hormones.

(D) illustrate the way in which particular hormones affect animals:
This option is incorrect. The passage does discuss how particular hormones affect animals, but the main focus is on comparing and contrasting the functioning of plant hormones and animal hormones, rather than providing detailed illustrations of how specific hormones affect animals.

(E) explain the distinction between hormones and regulatory molecules:
This option is incorrect. While the passage does mention hormones and regulatory molecules, it does not provide an explicit explanation of the distinction between the two. The primary purpose of discussing animal hormones is to introduce the idea of a hierarchy of hormones, as explained in option (A).

Answer: A
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