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V61-01

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V61-01  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Sep 2018, 22:50
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A discovery made by two Australian researchers, Barry Marshall and John Warren, revolutionized the scientific community's understanding of peptic ulcer disease and transformed the illness from a chronic, frequently disabling condition to one that can be cured by a short regimen of antibiotics.
In 1981, the two researchers first began to work together. Their discovery came about after Warren had observed bacteria in the lower part of the stomach of patients, which contradicted the long-held belief that bacteria could not survive in the acidic stomach environment. Warren also noticed that signs of inflammation were always present close to the bacteria. While conducting further studies on more patients, Warren and Marshall found H. pylori bacteria present in almost all patients with stomach inflammation or ulcers in the stomach. The two hypothesized that there was a causal link between H. pylori and ulcers, and that ulcers were not caused by stress, as previously thought. In order to support their controversial claims, they experimented on animals, and when this turned out to be unsuccessful, Marshall took it upon himself to be his own guinea pig. After verifying that he did not already have H. pylori in his stomach, Marshall drank a concoction made from cultured bacteria. Within a few days, he came down with gastritis, and H. pylori were found in his inflamed stomach; he was then cured with the help of antibiotics.
The researchers' findings were so contentious that it took ten years for their work to be accepted. Many researchers tried to disprove their findings, but failed to do so. Despite this, numerous scientists and doctors remained doubtful and refused to believe that any bacteria could live in the acidic environment of the stomach. According to Marshall, the pharmaceutical industry also had a role in preventing their bacteria theory from gaining traction. At the time, the most common treatment for ulcers was antacids, which required constant use, since the symptoms would return immediately after patients stopped taking them. Hence, the notion that ulcers could be permanently cured by taking antibiotics was highly unappealing to the pharmaceutical companies. By 1994, however, the evidence was overwhelming, prompting a change in the treatment of ulcers and establishing antibiotics as the standard approach. Finally, in 2005 Warren and Marshall received the praise they so clearly deserved, winning the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for their innovative work.

The passage supplies information that would answer which of the following questions?

A. What role does the pharmaceutical industry play in scientific discoveries?
B. How did the two researchers come to work together?
C. Why was the experiment that supported Warren and Marshall’s claims hard to conduct?
D. Why were the researchers’ findings initially rejected?
E. Why does H.pylori cause ulcers?

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Re V61-01  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Sep 2018, 22:50
Official Solution:

A discovery made by two Australian researchers, Barry Marshall and John Warren, revolutionized the scientific community's understanding of peptic ulcer disease and transformed the illness from a chronic, frequently disabling condition to one that can be cured by a short regimen of antibiotics.
In 1981, the two researchers first began to work together. Their discovery came about after Warren had observed bacteria in the lower part of the stomach of patients, which contradicted the long-held belief that bacteria could not survive in the acidic stomach environment. Warren also noticed that signs of inflammation were always present close to the bacteria. While conducting further studies on more patients, Warren and Marshall found H. pylori bacteria present in almost all patients with stomach inflammation or ulcers in the stomach. The two hypothesized that there was a causal link between H. pylori and ulcers, and that ulcers were not caused by stress, as previously thought. In order to support their controversial claims, they experimented on animals, and when this turned out to be unsuccessful, Marshall took it upon himself to be his own guinea pig. After verifying that he did not already have H. pylori in his stomach, Marshall drank a concoction made from cultured bacteria. Within a few days, he came down with gastritis, and H. pylori were found in his inflamed stomach; he was then cured with the help of antibiotics.
The researchers' findings were so contentious that it took ten years for their work to be accepted. Many researchers tried to disprove their findings, but failed to do so. Despite this, numerous scientists and doctors remained doubtful and refused to believe that any bacteria could live in the acidic environment of the stomach. According to Marshall, the pharmaceutical industry also had a role in preventing their bacteria theory from gaining traction. At the time, the most common treatment for ulcers was antacids, which required constant use, since the symptoms would return immediately after patients stopped taking them. Hence, the notion that ulcers could be permanently cured by taking antibiotics was highly unappealing to the pharmaceutical companies. By 1994, however, the evidence was overwhelming, prompting a change in the treatment of ulcers and establishing antibiotics as the standard approach. Finally, in 2005 Warren and Marshall received the praise they so clearly deserved, winning the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for their innovative work.


The passage supplies information that would answer which of the following questions?

A. What role does the pharmaceutical industry play in scientific discoveries?
B. How did the two researchers come to work together?
C. Why was the experiment that supported Warren and Marshall’s claims hard to conduct?
D. Why were the researchers’ findings initially rejected?
E. Why does H.pylori cause ulcers?

Look for an answer choice which describes a question fully addressed in the text.
(A) The passage gives an example of this phenomenon, but clearly doesn’t supply enough information to answer the question.
(B) isn’t answered in the passage.
(C) It is stated that the experiment on animals was unsuccessful, but not why this was the case. Also, the experiment Marshall conducted on himself seems dangerous, but not actually hard to conduct.
(D) Seems right – the reasons for the finding’s rejection are discussed at length.
(E) The passage describes how it was discovered that H.pylori causes ulcers, but not why this is the case.

Answer: D
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Re V61-01   [#permalink] 04 Sep 2018, 22:50
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