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Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances

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Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances that tell individual genes both when to become active and when to remain quiescent in the earliest phases of an embryo’s development.

(A) tell individual genes both when to become active and when to remain

(B) tell individual genes both at which time they should become active or should remain

(C) tells individual genes both when to become active or remain

(D) tells individual genes both when to become active or when to remain

(E) will tell an individual gene both about when it should become active and remain

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Originally posted by maybeam on 08 Jul 2012, 02:30.
Last edited by generis on 24 Apr 2018, 07:21, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2012, 10:57
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There is a simple clue that will do the trick. The clue is the word ‘both’, which acts as the first part of the correlative conjunction - both…. and, to describe two events, namely, when to become and when to remain. It implies therefore that any choice using the conjunction ‘or’ is out of way; B, C, and D are gone. Between, A and E, it does not take much time to eliminate E, what with E being ridden with so many flaws such as the unidiomatic ‘both about’ and the use of the future tense ‘will’ for an eternal fact.

The other route is to remain committed that the subordinate verb is tell, following a restrictive pronoun ‘that’ and then choose A over B for reasons of concision.
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 13 Jul 2012, 22:40
Guys,

I would suggest all of you to refer to the MGMAT forum to clear this doubt.

http://www.manhattangmat.com/forums/sin ... t1400.html

"One of the" construct is NOT always considered singular. Many of the answers in the 1000 SC collections are not correct.

Correcting my statement (Adding a NOT which i missed earlier and changed the whole meaning. :-) ... sorry for the confusion.

Thanks!!

Originally posted by jainvik7 on 13 Jul 2012, 08:10.
Last edited by jainvik7 on 13 Jul 2012, 22:40, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jul 2012, 09:42
@jainvik7

Quote:
"One of the" construct is always considered singular.


I am afraid one cannot justify such a wide remark. You may refer to Stacey’s observation in the link you have cited.

Quote:
Your middle sentence has a different structure. Here's the core of each:

1) One of the ethnic groups was (main subj=one, main verb=was)

2) A higher interest rate is only one of the factors that keep (main subj=rate, main verb=was. THEN "one of the factors that keep" is a subordinate clause - the "that" indicates a noun modifier, so it refers to the noun right before it - "factors")

3) One of the students was (main subj = one, main verb = was)

So the question is what noun to match with what verb. In a sentence in which you have a straight "one of the noun verb," one is going to match with that verb. In a sentence in which you have "noun verb one of the noun THAT verb" the verb is going to go with the noun immediately preceding the word "that."

You may thus see it is not always that 'one of the construct' is singular, as you have mentioned. Secondly, in this present example, you see the prevalence of the subordinate clause introduced by the noun modifier ‘that’ . So the verb is going to be plural in this case, namely ‘tell’ rather than the singular ‘tells’.

Am I right?
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jul 2012, 11:17
hey i studied Stacey's explanation on the forum. But still not very clear as to when consider one of the as singular and when to consider it plural.

@daagh: can you please give a detail explanation?
It would be really very helpful
Thanx :)
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jul 2012, 13:20
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Consider these examples.

One of the books in the rack has been written by Irving Wallace

This is a simple sentence with ‘one ‘as the subject, of the books as the prepositional intermediary and ‘is ‘as the verb. In this case, the subject and the verb are singular.

Look at the next case. One of the books that have been written by Irving Wallace is in the rack. --- here the main clause is ‘one of the books is in the rack’ and the subordinate clause introduced by the relative pronoun and the conjunction is ‘that have been written by Irving Wallace’. The verb of this subordinate cluse will be plural, since the relative pronoun refers to the noun before and takes on its characteristics such as number and gender. Hence, the subject of the subordinate clause is plural in nature and the verb is plural.

This is what Stacey says according to me. In other words, whenever you see a relative pronoun such as that or who etc, in a complex sentence that contains ‘ one of the construct’ , be guided by the number of the noun it touches for determining the number of the verb.
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jul 2012, 18:38
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For this sentence, 'one of the substances' is not singular. If we take a closer look we are describing substances. Which substances? The ones that 'tell individual...' Therefore, we can eliminate (C), (D). (We can get rid of (E) because the future tense is not required; the 'it' is wordy).

The idiom is BOTH X and Y. (B) has BOTH X or Y. Thus the answer is (A).

Hope that helps :).
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Apr 2016, 04:58
Quote:
+1 for A.
the relative pronoun that refers to substances and thus the verb must be plural. thus C & D are eliminated.
the correct idiom is both X and Y. In B, this idiom is not used correctly. hence this answer choice is eliminated.
in E - the entities from the structure both X and Y are not parallel.
tell an individual gene - changes meaning.


I guess D is correct as it uses 'tells' according to the rule, ' One of the' + noun (plural) + singular verb. Please correct me if I am wrong.[/quote]

you are partly wrong, "that" is the demonstrative pronoun, its antecedent is substances

biologists found one of the substances

these substances tell smth

since that refers to substances, the plural verb tell is needed.

it would be correct if "that" was not present here.

one of the substances tells - ok
but this is not the case[/quote]


This question is troubling and if someone can explain to me clearer, I will much appreciate it.

The idea of "that" baffles me because
1) I understand that GMAT uses "that" to modify the preceding noun "substances". However, the meaning does not make sense to me because it is not all the substances that "tell(s)" the gene when to become active or not, but that "one" substance. That is the meaning of the sentence to me. If we are applying GMAT's rule strictly though, I guess we have no problems.
2) But, as in this link http://gmatclub.com/forum/horses-have-a-unique-system-of-interlocking-ligaments-and-bones-192969.html, i can say sufficiently that the "that" can modify the "XX of YY and ZZ" if it sufficiently makes sense for the meaning of the statement.
3) This means that there should not be any hard rule or there are exceptions to this rule, especially if it makes sense. So if, say the exceptions, liken that of "XX of YY, which" when "which" modifies XX, doesn't it also mean that our question here, with "that", should modify "one" and give our answer "tells"?

Please if someone can advise on this, that'll be great.
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Apr 2016, 05:53
scottleey wrote:

This question is troubling and if someone can explain to me clearer, I will much appreciate it.

The idea of "that" baffles me because
1) I understand that GMAT uses "that" to modify the preceding noun "substances". However, the meaning does not make sense to me because it is not all the substances that "tell(s)" the gene when to become active or not, but that "one" substance. That is the meaning of the sentence to me. If we are applying GMAT's rule strictly though, I guess we have no problems.
2) But, as in this link http://gmatclub.com/forum/horses-have-a-unique-system-of-interlocking-ligaments-and-bones-192969.html, i can say sufficiently that the "that" can modify the "XX of YY and ZZ" if it sufficiently makes sense for the meaning of the statement.
3) This means that there should not be any hard rule or there are exceptions to this rule, especially if it makes sense. So if, say the exceptions, liken that of "XX of YY, which" when "which" modifies XX, doesn't it also mean that our question here, with "that", should modify "one" and give our answer "tells"?

Please if someone can advise on this, that'll be great.


Hi,
1) "that" in "One of the substances that" correctly refers back to substances..
The meaning is also correct..
It does not mean that all substances tell the gene..., It is rather putting retriction on the substances..
We are now talking of ONLY those substances that tell the gene..... AND scientists have found ONE of them...
2) Yes which and that can refer to some slightly faraway noun at times. In these conditions generally there is no verb in between and there is no ambiguity.
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Apr 2016, 06:21
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scottleey wrote:
The idea of "that" baffles me because
1) I understand that GMAT uses "that" to modify the preceding noun "substances". However, the meaning does not make sense to me because it is not all the substances that "tell(s)" the gene when to become active or not, but that "one" substance. That is the meaning of the sentence to me. If we are applying GMAT's rule strictly though, I guess we have no problems.

Basically the sentence is trying to say:

- There are many substances that tell individual genes both when to become active and when to remain quiescent.
- Biologists have found one of them.

Quote:
2) But, as in this link http://gmatclub.com/forum/horses-have-a-unique-system-of-interlocking-ligaments-and-bones-192969.html, i can say sufficiently that the "that" can modify the "XX of YY and ZZ" if it sufficiently makes sense for the meaning of the statement.

This horses example is one of the numerous examples in OG that illustrate that that can modify a faraway word; but it all depends on the logic. For example in the horses example, clearly the unique system serves as a kind of sling.

Quote:
3) This means that there should not be any hard rule or there are exceptions to this rule, especially if it makes sense. So if, say the exceptions, liken that of "XX of YY, which" when "which" modifies XX, doesn't it also mean that our question here, with "that", should modify "one" and give our answer "tells"?

The only exception to this one of pattern is when the word only appears as part of this structure. For example:

Mercedes is the only one among the luxury cars that has a global fan following.

p.s. Our book EducationAisle Sentence Correction Nirvana discusses that, its application and examples in significant detail. If someone is interested, PM me your email-id, I can mail the corresponding section.
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Mar 2018, 06:18
I just wanted to say why (E) is wrong. When you use the phrase "tell about" you are reffering to stories. we are sitting in a cricle and we tell about things happened. Hence it is awkward for the substances to tell about ....

Hope it helps ... Cheers!
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Mar 2018, 10:26
maybeam wrote:
Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances that tell individual genes both when to become active and when to remain quiescent in the earliest phases of an embryo’s development.

(A) tell individual genes both when to become active and when to remain

(B) tell individual genes both at which time they should become active or should remain

(C) tells individual genes both when to become active or remain

(D) tells individual genes both when to become active or when to remain

(E) will tell an individual gene both about when it should become active and remain


Hence (A) is correct. Both X and Y is correct comparison.
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Re: Biologists believe that they have found one of the substances &nbs [#permalink] 28 Mar 2018, 10:26
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