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The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report

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The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jul 2017, 23:09
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67% (01:16) correct 33% (01:38) wrong

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63% (01:22) correct 37% (01:40) wrong

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The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in reports of the bacterial strains known as “super-bugs,” so called not because of enhanced virulence, but because of their resistance to many antimicrobial agents. In particular, researchers have become alarmed about NDM-1 (New Delhi metallo-beta-lactamase), which is not a single bacterial species, but a transmittable genetic element encoding multiple resistance genes. A resistance “cocktail” such as NDM-1 could bestow immunity to a bevy of preexisting drugs simultaneously, rendering the bacterium nearly impregnable.

However, in spite of the well-documented dangers posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria, many scientists argue that the human race has more to fear from viruses. Whereas bacteria reproduce asexually through binary fission, viruses lack the necessary structures for reproduction, and so are known as “intracellular obligate parasites.” Virus particles called virions must marshal the host cell’s ribosomes, enzymes, and other cellular machinery in order to propagate. Once various viral components have been built, they bind together randomly in the cellular cytoplasm. The newly finished copies of the virus break through the cellular membrane, destroying the cell in the process. Because of this, viral infections cannot be treated ex post facto in the same way as bacterial infections, since antivirals designed to kill the virus could do critical damage to the host cell itself. In fact, viruses can infect bacteria (themselves complete cells), but not the other way around. For many viruses, such as that responsible for the common cold sore, remission rather than cure is the goal of currently available treatment.

While the insidious spread of drug-resistant bacteria fueled by overuse of antibiotics in agriculture is nothing to be sneezed at, bacteria lack the potential for cataclysm that viruses have. The prominent virologist Nathan Wolfe considers human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which has resulted in the deaths of more than thirty million people and infected twice that number, “the biggest near-miss of our lifetime.” Despite being the most lethal pandemic in history, HIV could have caused far worse effects. It is only fortunate happenstance that this virus cannot be transmitted through respiratory droplets, as can the pathogenic viruses that cause modern strains of swine flu (H1N1), avian flu (H5N1), and SARS.


1. The main purpose of the passage can be expressed most accurately by which of the folowing?

(A) To contrast the manner by which bacteria and viruses infect the human body and cause cellular damage

(B) To explain the operations by which viruses use cell machinery to propagate

(C) To argue for additional resources to combat drug-resistant bacteria and easily transmissible pathogenic viruses

(D) To highlight the good fortune experienced by the human race, in that the HIV pandemic has not been more lethal.

(E) To compare the relative dangers of two biological threats and judge one of them to be far more important.
During review, it can be worth it to review the passage paragraph by paragraph. The first paragraph introduces bacterial "super-bugs" with some alarm. The second paragraph increases the alarm, noting how "many scientists argue that the human race has more to fear from viruses." This paragraph describes the way in which viruses hijack the cell, in order to illustrate how tough viruses are to treat. The last paragraph continues the comparison and puts a stake in the ground: "bacteria lack the potential for cataclysm that viruses have." This last point is illustrated by the "near-miss" we have had with the HIV pandemic.

(A) We are never told how bacteria infect the body. This is one way in which the two "bad guys" (bacteria and viruses) are not treated in parallel ways in the text. Again, the way in which viruses infect cells is described in order to show how hard it is to kill viruses.

(B) The hijacking process is certainly described, but to make a larger point: why it's hard to eradicate viruses, in comparison with bacteria.

(C) After reading this passage, you may want to call up the CDC and donate money, but the passage itself only raises a warning, if even that: it is not a call to action.

(D) The last paragraph does highlight our good fortune, but this is not the larger point of the whole passage.

(E) CORRECT. This passage compares the two threats (bacteria and viruses) and judges viruses to be far more important (after all, viruses have the "potential for cataclysm").




2. It can be inferred from the passage that infections by bacteria

(A) result from asexual reproduction through binary fission

(B) can be treated ex post facto by antimicrobial agents, unlike viral infections

(C) can be rendered vulnerable by a resistance cocktail such as NDM-1

(D) are rarely cured by currently available treatments, but rather only put into remission

(E) mirror those by viruses, in that they can both do critical damage to the host cell



3. According to the passage, intracellular obligate parasites

(A) are unable to propagate themselves on their own

(B) assemble their components randomly out of virions

(C) reproduce themselves through sexual combination with host cells

(D) have become resistant to antibiotics through the overuse of these drugs

(E) construct necessary reproductive structures out of destroyed host cells

This Specific Detail question requires us to determine what is true about "intracellular obligate parasites" (or IOPs, to give them a temporary abbreviation). Going back to the passage, we read this: Whereas bacteria reproduce asexually through binary fission, viruses lack the necessary structures for reproduction, and so are known as “intracellular obligate parasites.” The word "so" toward the end tells us that the reason viruses are called IOPs is that they "lack the necessary structures for reproduction." We are looking for this idea, perhaps slightly restated.

(A) CORRECT. If we know that viruses "lack the necessary structures for reproduction," then we know that they cannot reproduce (or propagate themselves) on their own.

(B) What we are told about virions is that they are "virus particles" and that they "must marshal the host cell's... cellular machinery in order to propagate." However, we don't know that the viruses are themselves then assembled out of virions. Moreover, IOPs seem like a more general class of thing than viruses, and so we wouldn't be able to conclude that something true about viruses would necessarily be true of all IOPs.

(C) We know that bacteria reproduce themselves asexually, in contrast to how viruses do so, but that doesn't mean that viruses necessarily do so sexually.

(D) Certain bacteria have become resistant to antibiotics, but we don't know that this is true of IOPs.

(E) This choice mixes up language from the passage. Viruses need reproductive structures, and they destroy host cells, but that doesn't mean that they first structures, and they destroy host cells, but that doesn't mean that they first destroy the host cells, then make reproductive structures out of the carcasses. (In fact, what they do is hijack living host cells, taking over their cellular machinery.)

The correct answer is A.


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Re: The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Jul 2017, 05:26
For the 3rd question, narrowed own to 2 choices:
Quote:
A) are unable to propagate themselves on their own

and
Quote:
C) reproduce themselves through sexual combination with host cells


Now is C wrong just for this part of the option: with host cells ?

How is A correct? It is mentioned
Quote:
Whereas bacteria reproduce asexually through binary fission, viruses lack the necessary structures for reproduction, and so are known as “intracellular obligate parasites.”

Dows this mean intracellular obligate parasites are viruses and thus the next line from passage which refers to virus also applies to intracellular obligate parasites:
Quote:
Virus particles called virions must marshal the host cell’s ribosomes, enzymes, and other cellular machinery in order to propagate.


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Re: The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Jul 2017, 07:53
1
Akshay,

For the 3rd question, because this is a simple "according to the passage" detail question you must read carefully and not use any outside knowledge when answering the question. Choice A is clearly supported by the line "Viruses lack the necessary structures for reproduction, and so are known as “intracellular obligate parasites,”" which is accurately paraphrased as "intracellular obligate parasites (A) are unable to propagate themselves on their own"

However, it seems as though you are relying on this part of the passage - "Virus particles called virions must marshal the host cell’s ribosomes, enzymes, and other cellular machinery in order to propagate. Once various viral components have been built, they bind together randomly in the cellular cytoplasm," to support choice C which states "reproduce themselves through sexual combination with host cells." Analyzing this information would require outside knowledge of how sexual reproduction occurs as there is no mention of sexual reproduction in the passage as pertaining to viruses and it seems you are assuming that "bind together" means sexual reproduction. However, if anything, the relevant outside knowledge would lead you to eliminate choice C as since "viruses lack the necessary structures for reproduction" they are therefore incapable of sexual reproduction and are literally only binding to the "cellular machinery" not engaging sexually with them.

Hopefully this explains why choice A, and not C, is the correct choice.

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Re: The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jan 2018, 23:00
7 minutes, all Qs correct. I struggle with biology passages.
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Re: The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Dec 2018, 21:12

+1 kudos to the posts containing answer explanations of all questions


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The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Dec 2018, 22:06
1
Quote:
1. The main purpose of the passage can be expressed most accurately by which of the following?

(A) To contrast the manner by which bacteria and viruses infect the human body and cause cellular damage

(B) To explain the operations by which viruses use cell machinery to propagate

(C) To argue for additional resources to combat drug-resistant bacteria and easily transmissible pathogenic viruses

(D) To highlight the good fortune experienced by the human race, in that the HIV pandemic has not been more lethal.

(E) To compare the relative dangers of two biological threats and judge one of them to be far more important.-

During review, it can be worth it to review the passage paragraph by paragraph. The first paragraph introduces bacterial "super-bugs" with some alarm. The second paragraph increases the alarm, noting how "many scientists argue that the human race has more to fear from viruses." This paragraph describes the way in which viruses hijack the cell, in order to illustrate how tough viruses are to treat. The last paragraph continues the comparison and puts a stake in the ground: "bacteria lack the potential for cataclysm that viruses have." This last point is illustrated by the "near-miss" we have had with the HIV pandemic.

(A) We are never told how bacteria infect the body. This is one way in which the two "bad guys" (bacteria and viruses) are not treated in parallel ways in the text. Again, the way in which viruses infect cells is described in order to show how hard it is to kill viruses.

(B) The hijacking process is certainly described, but to make a larger point: why it's hard to eradicate viruses, in comparison with bacteria.

(C) After reading this passage, you may want to call up the CDC and donate money, but the passage itself only raises a warning, if even that: it is not a call to action.

(D) The last paragraph does highlight our good fortune, but this is not the larger point of the whole passage.

(E) CORRECT. This passage compares the two threats (bacteria and viruses) and judges viruses to be far more important (after all, viruses have the "potential for cataclysm")

Ans :E
Quote:
2. It can be inferred from the passage that infections by bacteria

(A) result from asexual reproduction through binary fission -reproduction occurs this way,not the infection

(B) can be treated ex post facto by antimicrobial agents, unlike viral infections -Correct.Passage states:viral infections cannot be treated ex post facto in the same way as bacterial infections


(C) can be rendered vulnerable by a resistance cocktail such as NDM-1 -A resistance “cocktail” such as NDM-1 could bestow immunity to a bevy of preexisting drugs simultaneously, rendering the bacterium nearly impregnable. The statement is mentioned in passage.But again ,similar to A,does not talk about infection but something else.

(D) are rarely cured by currently available treatments, but rather only put into remission -Out of scope

(E) mirror those by viruses, in that they can both do critical damage to the host cell -Out of scope.


Ans:A



Quote:
3. According to the passage, intracellular obligate parasites

(A) are unable to propagate themselves on their own

(B) assemble their components randomly out of virions

(C) reproduce themselves through sexual combination with host cells

(D) have become resistant to antibiotics through the overuse of these drugs

(E) construct necessary reproductive structures out of destroyed host cells

This Specific Detail question requires us to determine what is true about "intracellular obligate parasites" (or IOPs, to give them a temporary abbreviation). Going back to the passage, we read this: Whereas bacteria reproduce asexually through binary fission, viruses lack the necessary structures for reproduction, and so are known as “intracellular obligate parasites.” The word "so" toward the end tells us that the reason viruses are called IOPs is that they "lack the necessary structures for reproduction." We are looking for this idea, perhaps slightly restated.

(A) CORRECT. If we know that viruses "lack the necessary structures for reproduction," then we know that they cannot reproduce (or propagate themselves) on their own.Also it states :Virus particles called virions must marshal the host cell’s ribosomes, enzymes, and other cellular machinery in order to propagate.This also implies it propages using virions.

(B) What we are told about virions is that they are "virus particles" and that they "must marshal the host cell's... cellular machinery in order to propagate." However, we don't know that the viruses are themselves then assembled out of virions. Moreover, IOPs seem like a more general class of thing than viruses, and so we wouldn't be able to conclude that something true about viruses would necessarily be true of all IOPs.

(C) We know that bacteria reproduce themselves asexually, in contrast to how viruses do so, but that doesn't mean that viruses necessarily do so sexually.

(D) Certain bacteria have become resistant to antibiotics, but we don't know that this is true of IOPs.

(E) This choice mixes up language from the passage. Viruses need reproductive structures, and they destroy host cells, but that doesn't mean that they first structures, and they destroy host cells, but that doesn't mean that they first destroy the host cells, then make reproductive structures out of the carcasses. (In fact, what they do is hijack living host cells, taking over their cellular machinery.)

Ans: A.
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Re: The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Dec 2018, 06:30
1
3 mins 19 sec.. all correct. Relatively easy passage with straightforward questions.

Summary/Main point - Bacteria are bad - especially the superbugs which have become more frequent this decade ( some detail about superbugs). Viruses are worse than bacteria ( in terms of having a cure) but they do not spread easily (some more detail about the reproduction of virus vs. bacteria). Bacteria are nothing to ignore but the virus is the real deal. Mr. Wolfe says we are lucky HIV doesn't spread by air else humans were goners.


Central idea question requires one to understand the tone of the author: which is neutral and also the main point - "Virus is worse than bacteria but still we are lucky that virus does not multiply as easily as bacteria"
1. The main purpose of the passage can be expressed most accurately by which of the folowing?

(A) To contrast the manner by which bacteria and viruses infect the human body and cause cellular damage Too detailed to be main point
(B) To explain the operations by which viruses use cell machinery to propagate Too detailed to be the main point
(C) To argue for additional resources to combat drug-resistant bacteria and easily transmissible pathogenic viruses Same as above
(D) To highlight the good fortune experienced by the human race, in that the HIV pandemic has not been more lethal. This is the final sentence but not the main purpose, again too detailed
(E) To compare the relative dangers of two biological threats and judge one of them to be far more important. Bingo - the author does exactly this. compares the relative dangers of bacterias and viruses and judges viruses to be far worse

Detail question and inference type - so we need to ensure 100% support for the correct option from the passage
2. It can be inferred from the passage that infections by bacteria

(A) result from asexual reproduction through binary fission HOLD, a good candidate at first sight TRAP choice - discard. A play of words need to see the subject of the question is the "infections" from bacteria and not the bacteria itself
(B) can be treated ex post facto by antimicrobial agents, unlike viral infections Bingo - this is verbatim from the passage, but need to reconsider in light of option A CORRECT OPTION
(C) can be rendered vulnerable by a resistance cocktail such as NDM-1 Nah, this is not true. Discard
(D) are rarely cured by currently available treatments, but rather only put into remission Opposite, the given is true about a virus and not bacteria
(E) mirror those by viruses, in that they can both do critical damage to the host cell Plain wrong, discard.

Between A and B - A is incorrect because the infection by bacteria does not result from asexual reproduction. The bacteria themselves engage in asexual reproduction.

Again, detail question of inference type
3. According to the passage, intracellular obligate parasites

(A) are unable to propagate themselves on their ownBingo - verbatim from the passage
(B) assemble their components randomly out of virions Randomly is a red flag - discard. Nowhere it is mentioned that assembly is random
(C) reproduce themselves through sexual combination with host cells Opposite, this is true about bacteria
(D) have become resistant to antibiotics through the overuse of these drugs Opposite, this is true about superbugs (bacteria)
(E) construct necessary reproductive structures out of destroyed host cellsTRAP - the virus uses cell structures and this leads to the destruction of the cells. oreover, the virus does not obtain reproductive structures. Discard

Verdict - Easy passage and relatively straightforward questions with few traps.
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Re: The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Dec 2018, 06:46
1
1. The main purpose of the passage can be expressed most accurately by which of the following?

(A) To contrast the manner by which bacteria and viruses infect the human body and cause cellular damage
Incorrect, The passage doesn't mention how bacteria infect the human body.

(B) To explain the operations by which viruses use cell machinery to propagate
Incorrect, The passage doesn't describe such operations, also partial scope.

(C) To argue for additional resources to combat drug-resistant bacteria and easily transmissible pathogenic viruses
Incorrect, This is opposite to what the passage is trying to communicate.

(D) To highlight the good fortune experienced by the human race, in that the HIV pandemic has not been more lethal.
Incorrect, A minor detail, not the central idea of the passage.

(E) To compare the relative dangers of two biological threats and judge one of them to be far more important.
Correct, by POE and this is the jist of the passage that viruses pose more danger than antibiotic-resistant bacteria.


2. It can be inferred from the passage that infections by bacteria

Straight B, the reference lines in the text are:
'Because of this, viral infections cannot be treated ex post facto in the same way as bacterial infections'...

3. According to the passage, intracellular obligate parasites

(A) are unable to propagate themselves on their own
Correct, reference lines from the passage:
'...known as “intracellular obligate parasites.” Virus particles called virions must marshal the host cell’s ribosomes, enzymes, and other cellular machinery in order to propagate...'

(B) assemble their components randomly out of virions
Incorrect, distortion of words in the text.

(C) reproduce themselves through sexual combination with host cells
Incorrect, not supported by the passage, the passage only mentions that parasites use host cell’s ribosomes, enzymes, and other cellular machinery to reproduce.

(D) have become resistant to antibiotics through the overuse of these drugs
Incorrect, Bacteria have become resistant not the viruses.

(E) construct necessary reproductive structures out of destroyed host cells
Incorrect, distortion of details, the host cells get destroyed after reproduction.
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Re: The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Dec 2018, 10:15
10:21min, only q3 incorrect silly mistake.
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Re: The past decade has seen a statistically significant uptick in report   [#permalink] 28 Dec 2018, 10:15
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