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# Five years ago, during the first North American outbreak of

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Manager
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Five years ago, during the first North American outbreak of [#permalink]

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13 Dec 2004, 19:53
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Five years ago, during the first North American outbreak of the cattle disease CXC, the death rate from the disease was 5 percent of all reported cases, whereas today the corresponding figure is over 18 percent. It is clear, therefore, that during these past 5 years, CXC has increased in virulence.
Which one of the following, if true, most substantially weakens the argument?

(A) Many recent cattle deaths that have actually been caused by CXC have been mistakenly attributed to another disease that mimics the symptoms of CXC.
(B) During the first North American outbreak of the disease, many of the deaths reported to have been caused by CXC were actually due to other causes.
(C) An inoculation program against CXC was recently begun after controlled studies showed inoculation to be 70 percent effective in preventing serious cases of the illness.
(D) Since the first outbreak, farmers have learned to treat mild cases of CXC and no longer report them to veterinarians or authorities.
(E) Cattle that have contracted and survived CXC rarely contract the disease a second time.

I am having problem agreeing w/ the OA. Could someone please explain? Thanks.

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Manager
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13 Dec 2004, 21:44
D assumes that the number of reported cases is lower than 5 years before and weaken the argument....

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Senior Manager
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14 Dec 2004, 01:02
Answer choice - C if true will most substantially weaken the arguement.

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14 Dec 2004, 02:34
I think I will pick A.

Thanks
Saurabh Malpani

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Senior Manager
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14 Dec 2004, 09:27
saurabhmalpani wrote:
I think I will pick A.

Thanks
Saurabh Malpani

i will gently disagree - answer A will actually strengthen the arguement, which is the exact opposite of what the question asks since the recent cases have actually been cxc but have been mistakenly attrbuted to another disease, this will make the recent percentage of deaths even higher and thus strengthen the arguement. this answer is tricky and is a common trap on the GMAT according to the strategies in kaplan. anyone has the OA and explanation???

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Manager
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14 Dec 2004, 10:16
The OA is D. I got this one wrong. Could someone please give further explanation on D?

Thanks!

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14 Dec 2004, 11:48
doggita wrote:
The OA is D. I got this one wrong. Could someone please give further explanation on D?

Thanks!

Well, the Conclusion of the argument is that the CXC has increased in virulence(become more severe).....but no choice but D supports that the cases of CXC that do not have severe effect also exist(mild cases)...... n moreover we cannot conclude that increase in the percentage of deaths means increase in number of deaths....hence D helps.....

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Director
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14 Dec 2004, 15:52
doggita wrote:
Five years ago, during the first North American outbreak of the cattle disease CXC, the death rate from the disease was 5 percent of all reported cases, whereas today the corresponding figure is over 18 percent. It is clear, therefore, that during these past 5 years, CXC has increased in virulence.
Which one of the following, if true, most substantially weakens the argument?

(D) Since the first outbreak, farmers have learned to treat mild cases of CXC and no longer report them to veterinarians or authorities.

Doggita, the stem says death rate was 18% of the REPORTED cases now compared to 5% five yrs ago. D states that farmers treat the mild cases themselves and do not report them to the authorities. Which implies that only the serious cases with higher incidence of death rate gets reported and hence the death rate has gone up. It is not because the CXC has increased in virulence. If the mild cases had been reported as well, the percentage could still have been only 5%.

I remember seeing a similar question like this with snake bites...

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Manager
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14 Dec 2004, 16:28
that makes sense! Thanks guys!!

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Senior Manager
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15 Dec 2004, 00:20
thanks for the great explanation gayathri ;]]

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15 Dec 2004, 00:20
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