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# Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of

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Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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11 Dec 2007, 07:28
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Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma, a slow-developing cancer, researches believe that infection by the SV40 virus is a contributing cause, since in the United States 60 percent of tissue samples from mesotheliomas, but none from healthy tissue, contain SV40. SV40 is a monkey virus; however, in 1960 some polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus. Reseaches hypothesize that this vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas decades later.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers' hypothesis?

(A) SV40 is widely used as a research tool in cancer laboratories.

(B) Changes in the technique of manufacturing the vaccine now prevent contamination with SV40.

(C) Recently discovered samples of the vaccine dating from 1960 still show traces of the virus.

(D) In a small percentage of cases of mesothelioma, there is no history of exposure to asbestos.

(E) In Finland, where the polio vaccine was never contaminated, samples from mesotheliomas do not contain SV40.

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

Last edited by mikemcgarry on 24 Sep 2015, 11:34, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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12 Dec 2007, 04:26
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ok i get it! the researchers' hypothesized that SV40 is the cause of mesotheliomas, a type of cancer. And because they found the virus in vaccines, this is why they claim that the vaccine must be the source. In option C, it is true that the vaccine is contaminated, therefore could be the cause, but this option does not isolate for us exactly whether it's the vaccine itself that is causing mesotheliomas or whether SV40 in the vaccine is causing mesotheliomas . remember, the researchers concluded that the vaccine must be the reason ONLY because they found traces of the SV40 in the contaminated vaccine, implying that the vaccine by itself is not the cause, but because of the SV40 that is found in the vaccine. In order to prove that that is the case, we need to find an answer choice with the same vaccine, only that this vaccine is not contaminated with SV40 in order to see whether it will still result in mesotheliomas . in option E, by showing that the same vaccine that is not contaminated with SV40 still doesn't produce mesotheliomas , it strengthens the researchers' hypothesis that it's the SV40 itself that is causing mesotheliomas, a type of cancer.
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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13 Dec 2007, 03:36
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After taking ample time on this question, I have got the option E.

Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma, a slow-developing cancer, researches believe that infection by the SV40 virus is a contributing cause, since in the United States 60 percent of tissue samples from mesotheliomas, but none from healthy tissue, contain SV40. SV40 is a monkey virus; however, in 1960 some polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus. Reseaches hypothesize that this vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas decades later.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers' hypothesis?

a) SV40 is widely used as a research tool in cancer laboratores.

b) Changes in the technique of manufacturing the vaccine now prevent contamination with SV40.

c) Recently discovered samples of the vaccine dating from 1960 still show traces of the virus.
The bolded part is already saying about contamination so, C will not be the strongest point.
d) In a small percentage of cases of mesothelioma, there is no history of exposure to asbestos.

e) In Finland, where the polio vaccine was never contaminated, samples from mesotheliomas do not contain SV40.
E amplifies the certainty of choice. E also supports the posibility where polio vaccine has never contaminated.
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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12 Dec 2007, 02:09
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tarek99 wrote:
but guys, what makes E better than C? in C, if the vaccine already shows traces of the virus (and when they mention virus, they are talking about SV40, no?), isn't that good enough? if i understood this text correctly, the reserchers hypothesized that the vaccine was the source of the spread of the virus, so if we can pick an answer choice that shows that the vacines do contain such virus, doesn't that accomplish the task? in option E, that would strengthen the point that the vaccine is not the cause.....hmm....can somebody explain why E is better than C?

C supports the idea that "polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus" (even though, it is not asked to support this statement) but it does bot support the hypothesis that this vaccine was the source.

though, i don't like E, it's the best choice among all
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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06 Apr 2012, 08:00
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E for me..............

We want to prove that SV40 was cause and not the result of illness......
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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19 Jul 2011, 05:09
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good question. picked E. It strengthens researchers argument by cancelling alternative explanations
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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20 Jul 2011, 21:41
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Asbestos is primary cause for mesothelioma.
SV40 is a contributor as a percentage of tissue was found with the virus in mesothelioma cases.
Some polio vaccine was contaminated with SV40.
Hypothesis: Vaccine was source of virus found in mesothelioma.

What supports the hypothesis?
A - Unrelated
B - Unrelated
C - Reiterates/restates that some vaccine was indeed conaminated, but doesn't help prove the vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas.
D - Reiterates/restates that although asbestos is a primary cause, SV40 is a contributor.
E - US had contamination, and subsequently, SV40. Finland had no contamination, and we hypothesize, no SV40 as a result. This helps our overall hypothesis that the contaminated vaccine was the source of the virus. This is the correct answer.

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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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20 Mar 2013, 11:38
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tarek99 wrote:
Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma, a slow-developing cancer, researches believe that infection by the SV40 virus is a contributing cause, since in the United States 60 percent of tissue samples from mesotheliomas, but none from healthy tissue, contain SV40. SV40 is a monkey virus; however, in 1960 some polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus. Reseaches hypothesize that this vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas decades later.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers' hypothesis?
(A) SV40 is widely used as a research tool in cancer laboratores.
(B) Changes in the technique of manufacturing the vaccine now prevent contamination with SV40.
(C) Recently discovered samples of the vaccine dating from 1960 still show traces of the virus.
(D) In a small percentage of cases of mesothelioma, there is no history of exposure to asbestos.
(E) In Finland, where the polio vaccine was never contaminated, samples from mesotheliomas do not contain SV40.

fameatop wrote:
I am not able to understand why option C is incorrect & E is correct. Can you kindly throw some light on the same. Waiting eagerly for your detailed explanation. Regards, Fame

Fame,
So, the argument presents, as evidence, the fact that "in 1960 some polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus." That's evidence, so for GMAT purposes, that's fact beyond dispute. Then it makes the argument, the hypothesis, that SV40 in the vaccine CAUSED the SV40 in the mesotheliomas. That's the actual argument we are trying to support, the link between the SV40 in the vaccine and the SV40 in the mesothelioma tissue.

Well, (C) merely strengthens the evidence. We already were told that there was SV40 virus in the polio vaccine. That's already beyond doubt. Statement (C) strengthens this statement that is already beyond doubt, but it doesn't say squat about the link to mesothelioma. The researchers were hypothesizing this link between SV40 virus in the vaccines and mesothelioma, and (C), while it verifies --- "yep, there sure was SV40 in that polio vaccine!" --- doesn't bring us any closer to a link with with mesothelioma. The argument is all about that link.

By contrast, (E) is very powerful. If the SV40 virus in the vaccines really is the source of the virus in the mesothelioma tissue, then if we found some case in which there was no SV40 virus in the vaccine, then we would expect to find no SV40 virus in the mesothelioma tissue. (E) provides this new and very cogent evidence. This is new, different from what was stated in the passage, although it provides strong support to the passage. In general, if I make the argument that P and only P causes Q, then part of what I am predicting is --- if there's no P, then there should be no Q. That would be very powerful evidence for this claim, and this is precisely the nature of the powerful evidence that (E) provides. That's why it's the best answer.

Does this make sense?

Mike
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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02 Dec 2013, 15:10
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sidpopy wrote:
Dear Mike

thanks for reply. Now pl suggest me something.

Initially even i thought of the same answer what you have suggested, but further changed my decision when in conclusion I saw the word " this vaccine." I understood it as to find the support only for that particular 1906 contaminated vaccine as only responsible for the outbreak. Whereas your answer no effect no cause make me to understand conclusion as all vaccines are causing issue.Pl suggest
Regards, Sid

Dear Sid,
I'm happy to respond. Are you aware that this request is not very clearly written? I believe I understand what you are asking. It would be excellent practice for you to strive to have all your writing on GMAT Club adhere to the high standards of GMAT SC. Resist the urge to be casual and efficient. Every single thing you do here can serve as practice for your GMAT, and excellence demands no less than that.

Here is the argument again:
Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma, a slow-developing cancer, researches believe that infection by the SV40 virus is a contributing cause, since in the United States 60 percent of tissue samples from mesotheliomas, but none from healthy tissue, contain SV40. SV40 is a monkey virus; however, in 1960 some polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus. Researchers hypothesize that this vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas decades later.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers' hypothesis?

So, yes, the conclusion is about this one and only this one vaccine, the 1960 polio vaccine that was contaminated with SV40.

This doesn't not change anything about my analysis above. Choice (C) only repeats what we already know. It reinforces evidence that was already stated, and makes absolutely no link to mesothelioma. By contrast, in an argument that P causes Q, the evidence "no P, no Q" is very powerful support, and that's precisely what choice (E) provides.

Does this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2015, 12:11
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SamuelWitwicky wrote:
Mike, you are like Bunuel for Quant. Anyway, I feel embarrassed to say this, but I chose B because I thought since the manufacturing process now prevents contamination of SV40, surely this virus must have caused a problem (i.e. contributed to mesothelioma). Why else would you change the manufacturing process unless SV40 caused problems right? Therefore, it would be sufficient as an assumption. I know E is definitely the better answer, but what do you think of my reasoning for B?

Dear SamuelWitwicky,
I'm happy to respond. Thank you very much for you kind words. I must say, I feel a little humbled by the comparison to Bunuel, whom I hold in tremendous respect.

What you ask is an excellent question. Here's the prompt again:
Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma, a slow-developing cancer, researches believe that infection by the SV40 virus is a contributing cause, since in the United States 60 percent of tissue samples from mesotheliomas, but none from healthy tissue, contain SV40. SV40 is a monkey virus; however, in 1960 some polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus. Researches hypothesize that this vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas decades later.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers' hypothesis?

(A) SV40 is widely used as a research tool in cancer laboratories.

(B) Changes in the technique of manufacturing the vaccine now prevent contamination with SV40.

(C) Recently discovered samples of the vaccine dating from 1960 still show traces of the virus.

(D) In a small percentage of cases of mesothelioma, there is no history of exposure to asbestos.

(E) In Finland, where the polio vaccine was never contaminated, samples from mesotheliomas do not contain SV40.

Here's what I think about (B). The hypothesis is that the contamination of the polio vaccine with the virus SV40 contributes to the incidence of mesothelioma. We don't know whether this is true: the researcher think that this is true, and we are asked to strength this conclusion.

If that conjecture were true, then it would be a problem, and (B) would be an excellent solution to the problem. But we are not asked to solve the biological problem discussed: we are asked to strengthen the conclusion. Furthermore, we don't have any additional information. The prediction of the researchers would be that if we changed the vaccine manufacturing technique, eliminating SV40 contamination, then we would expect the incidence of mesothelioma to drop. If we were told all this, then that would be incredibly strong evidence for this conjecture. The problem is: we are not told the result. We are told only that SV40 has been eliminating from the vaccine manufacturing process. Then what happened? Frustratingly, we are not told. The results of this change could be a huge strengthener, but we are not told this. That's the problem with (B).

We can't really make inferences from the manufacturer's motivations. First of all, when a group of scientists speculate that some X is a risk, a lot of people just start avoiding X because it could be a risk, even though sometimes it turns out that this X is perfectly safe. The manufacturers might have caught wind of the scientists' speculation and simply believed them because they are scientists, irrespective of the validity of the conjecture. Furthermore, it is quite likely that the manufacturer made a change that eliminates not just SV40 in particular, but a number of viruses --- for example, some kind of intense heat or flash pasteurization, something that would destroy virtually all viruses. The manufacturers could have made this change on general principles, without any knowledge at all about SV40 in particular. We simply don't know.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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11 Dec 2007, 12:23
I would go for E.
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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11 Dec 2007, 21:58
tarek99 wrote:
Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma, a slow-developing cancer, researches believe that infection by the SV40 virus is a contributing cause, since in the United States 60 percent of tissue samples from mesotheliomas, but none from healthy tissue, contain SV40. SV40 is a monkey virus; however, in 1960 some polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus. Reseaches hypothesize that this vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas decades later.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers' hypothesis?

a) SV40 is widely used as a research tool in cancer laboratores.

b) Changes in the technique of manufacturing the vaccine now prevent contamination with SV40.

c) Recently discovered samples of the vaccine dating from 1960 still show traces of the virus.

d) In a small percentage of cases of mesothelioma, there is no history of exposure to asbestos.

e) In Finland, where the polio vaccine was never contaminated, samples from mesotheliomas do not contain SV40.

Quite honestly, after reading the passage for the first time, I didn't know what the jack it meant

After re-reading with more focus, I sort of figure it out like this:

Researchers hypothesize that the cause of mesotheliomas, a slow- developing cancer, is SV40 virus, not the exposure to asbestos. Their reason is that SV40 is found in mesotheliomas cells and not found in healthy cells. Choice D says that in some small cases of mesotheliomas there was no exposure to asbestos. This proves that asbestos is not the only cause of the cancer, and in turn strengthens the conclusion that SV40 virus is the cause of the cancer in these cases.

a. is irrelevant
b. irrelevant
c. traces of the virus found shows that vaccines was comtaminated, but does not strengthen the conclusion that the SV40 virus causes cancer. vaccine here is general, not specific to polio. Thus can not apply.
e. This weakens the conclusion. This particular fact shows that where polio vaccine is absent of SV40 virus, mesotheliomas contains no SV40. Thus in this case, SV40 is not the cause of the cancer. This finding weakens the researchers' hypothesis.
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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11 Dec 2007, 22:39
tnguyen707 wrote:
tarek99 wrote:
Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma, a slow-developing cancer, researches believe that infection by the SV40 virus is a contributing cause, since in the United States 60 percent of tissue samples from mesotheliomas, but none from healthy tissue, contain SV40. SV40 is a monkey virus; however, in 1960 some polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus. Reseaches hypothesize that this vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas decades later.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers' hypothesis?

a) SV40 is widely used as a research tool in cancer laboratores.

b) Changes in the technique of manufacturing the vaccine now prevent contamination with SV40.

c) Recently discovered samples of the vaccine dating from 1960 still show traces of the virus.

d) In a small percentage of cases of mesothelioma, there is no history of exposure to asbestos.

e) In Finland, where the polio vaccine was never contaminated, samples from mesotheliomas do not contain SV40.

Quite honestly, after reading the passage for the first time, I didn't know what the jack it meant

After re-reading with more focus, I sort of figure it out like this:

Researchers hypothesize that the cause of mesotheliomas, a slow- developing cancer, is SV40 virus, not the exposure to asbestos. Their reason is that SV40 is found in mesotheliomas cells and not found in healthy cells. Choice D says that in some small cases of mesotheliomas there was no exposure to asbestos. This proves that asbestos is not the only cause of the cancer, and in turn strengthens the conclusion that SV40 virus is the cause of the cancer in these cases.

a. is irrelevant
b. irrelevant
c. traces of the virus found shows that vaccines was comtaminated, but does not strengthen the conclusion that the SV40 virus causes cancer. vaccine here is general, not specific to polio. Thus can not apply.
e. This weakens the conclusion. This particular fact shows that where polio vaccine is absent of SV40 virus, mesotheliomas contains no SV40. Thus in this case, SV40 is not the cause of the cancer. This finding weakens the researchers' hypothesis.

I would go for E.
The hypothesis says that the vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas decades later.
E strengthens it by illustrating a case where the polio vaccine was not contaminated and mesotheliomas samples did not contain the virus.
D doesn't seem to have a relationship with the hypothesis.
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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12 Dec 2007, 01:47
but guys, what makes E better than C? in C, if the vaccine already shows traces of the virus (and when they mention virus, they are talking about SV40, no?), isn't that good enough? if i understood this text correctly, the reserchers hypothesized that the vaccine was the source of the spread of the virus, so if we can pick an answer choice that shows that the vacines do contain such virus, doesn't that accomplish the task? in option E, that would strengthen the point that the vaccine is not the cause.....hmm....can somebody explain why E is better than C?
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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12 Dec 2007, 04:12
OA is E, but i really don't see why E is better than C. need some help on this one
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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12 Dec 2007, 09:19
tarek99 wrote:
Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma, a slow-developing cancer, researches believe that infection by the SV40 virus is a contributing cause, since in the United States 60 percent of tissue samples from mesotheliomas, but none from healthy tissue, contain SV40. SV40 is a monkey virus; however, in 1960 some polio vaccine was contaminated with the virus. Reseaches hypothesize that this vaccine was the source of the virus found in mesotheliomas decades later.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the researchers' hypothesis?

a) SV40 is widely used as a research tool in cancer laboratores.

b) Changes in the technique of manufacturing the vaccine now prevent contamination with SV40.

c) Recently discovered samples of the vaccine dating from 1960 still show traces of the virus.

d) In a small percentage of cases of mesothelioma, there is no history of exposure to asbestos.

e) In Finland, where the polio vaccine was never contaminated, samples from mesotheliomas do not contain SV40.

What's the source? Thanks.
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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12 Dec 2007, 09:44
The source is Gmatprep
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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15 Dec 2007, 19:05
i would go for E
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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15 Dec 2007, 19:20
I will go for E.
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Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of [#permalink]

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23 Dec 2007, 15:15
Hi guys, the OA is E.

I had C for the answer, but clearly, the passage designed to misdirect the reader with "cause" vs "source".

The whole passage concentrated on the "cause" of cancer, but the last sentence mentioned "source". I think many people assumed that the question is asking for the cause. Clearly a sneaky way of asking a question. In the real world, this would be a "gotcha" question being posed by smart alecs, not to be taken seriously.
Re: Although exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of   [#permalink] 23 Dec 2007, 15:15

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