ACT Science : How to find research summary in biology

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for ACT Science

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Example Question #1 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

Sleep plays a vital role in defining the daily activities of virtually all animals. During periods of sleep, the parasympathetic nervous system becomes active and induces a relaxed state in response to increased levels of the hormone melatonin. Yet, despite its ubiquity in the animal kingdom, the purpose of sleep and its role in our daily lives has been disputed by scientists. Two scientists discuss their theories about the purpose of sleep.

Scientist 1

During periods of sleep, animals are able to conserve energy that they would otherwise be spending on unnecessary activity. If an animal’s primary food source is most abundant during daylight, it is a waste of precious energy to be moving about at night. For example, many herbivores, such as squirrels, are diurnal (sleep during the night) because their food source is available during the day, while many insectivores, such as bats, are nocturnal (sleep during the day) because their food source is available during the night. Food sources, as an animal’s most valuable resource, dictate their sleep cycles. Many animal traits observable today evolved as a result of the supply and demand of food in their natural habitat.

Scientist 2

During waking hours, it is true that the body utilizes large amounts of energy. However, the role of sleep is to restore biological products that were utilized during periods of wakefulness, rather than simply avoid utilizing energy in the first place. Many types of biological molecules, such as hormones, are released throughout the body while an animal is active. Sleep serves as a period of inactivity during which the body can manufacture and store a supply of these molecules for future use during the next period of activity. Furthermore, sleep allows the body to repair cellular damages that has accumulated during waking hours. Experimental evidence shows that when animals are deprived of sleep, their immune system quickly weakens and death rates increase. Sleep is necessary for animals to prevent accumulation of damage and to regenerate crucial biomolecules for daily life.

Which of the following, if true, would most support Scientist 1?

Possible Answers:

Human ancestors evolved from being nocturnal to being diurnal.

Bats that are given infinite food availability sleep more.

Birds sleep in trees to avoid predators on the ground.

Bears hibernate in the winter because their food source is scarce.

Many rodents are nocturnal, but squirrels are diurnal.

Correct answer:

Bears hibernate in the winter because their food source is scarce.

Explanation:

Scientist 1 claims that sleep allows animals to conserve energy during times when food is less readily available. Thus, a bear sleeping because its food is unavailable supports Scientist 1's theory.

The only other answer involving food states "Bats that are given infinite food availability sleep more." According to Scientist 1, this would mean that the bats also have unlimited energy and would require less sleep. They would not need to conserve energy if they had unlimited food.

Example Question #1 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

Sleep plays a vital role in defining the daily activities of virtually all animals. During periods of sleep, the parasympathetic nervous system becomes active and induces a relaxed state in response to increased levels of the hormone melatonin. Yet, despite its ubiquity in the animal kingdom, the purpose of sleep and its role in our daily lives has been disputed by scientists. Two scientists discuss their theories about the purpose of sleep.

Scientist 1

During periods of sleep, animals are able to conserve energy that they would otherwise be spending on unnecessary activity. If an animal’s primary food source is most abundant during daylight, it is a waste of precious energy to be moving about at night. For example, many herbivores, such as squirrels, are diurnal (sleep during the night) because their food source is available during the day, while many insectivores, such as bats, are nocturnal (sleep during the day) because their food source is available during the night. Food sources, as an animal’s most valuable resource, dictate their sleep cycles. Many animal traits observable today evolved as a result of the supply and demand of food in their natural habitat.

Scientist 2

During waking hours, it is true that the body utilizes large amounts of energy. However, the role of sleep is to restore biological products that were utilized during periods of wakefulness, rather than simply avoid utilizing energy in the first place. Many types of biological molecules, such as hormones, are released throughout the body while an animal is active. Sleep serves as a period of inactivity during which the body can manufacture and store a supply of these molecules for future use during the next period of activity. Furthermore, sleep allows the body to repair cellular damages that has accumulated during waking hours. Experimental evidence shows that when animals are deprived of sleep, their immune system quickly weakens and death rates increase. Sleep is necessary for animals to prevent accumulation of damage and to regenerate crucial biomolecules for daily life.

Which of the following, if true, would most support Scientist 2?

Possible Answers:

Elephants in a herd sleep at the same time as a group

Tigers that are deprived of sleep often become sick

Humans have more energy in the morning than in the evening

Antelope that have been injured sleep less than those that are healthy

Mother dogs often stay awake at night to guard their pups

Correct answer:

Tigers that are deprived of sleep often become sick

Explanation:

Scientist 2's theory states that "when animals are deprived of sleep, their immune system quickly weakens". Thus, when tigers are deprived of sleep, their immune systems would weaken and they would be likely to become sick.

The only other answer choice dealing with repairing damage and restoring the body is "Antelope that have been injured sleep less than those that are healthy". According to scientist 2, animals with more damage would likely sleep more to repair the damage, not less.

Example Question #2 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

Sleep plays a vital role in defining the daily activities of virtually all animals. During periods of sleep, the parasympathetic nervous system becomes active and induces a relaxed state in response to increased levels of the hormone melatonin. Yet, despite its ubiquity in the animal kingdom, the purpose of sleep and its role in our daily lives has been disputed by scientists. Two scientists discuss their theories about the purpose of sleep.

Scientist 1

During periods of sleep, animals are able to conserve energy that they would otherwise be spending on unnecessary activity. If an animal’s primary food source is most abundant during daylight, it is a waste of precious energy to be moving about at night. For example, many herbivores, such as squirrels, are diurnal (sleep during the night) because their food source is available during the day, while many insectivores, such as bats, are nocturnal (sleep during the day) because their food source is available during the night. Food sources, as an animal’s most valuable resource, dictate their sleep cycles. Many animal traits observable today evolved as a result of the supply and demand of food in their natural habitat.

Scientist 2

During waking hours, it is true that the body utilizes large amounts of energy. However, the role of sleep is to restore biological products that were utilized during periods of wakefulness, rather than simply avoid utilizing energy in the first place. Many types of biological molecules, such as hormones, are released throughout the body while an animal is active. Sleep serves as a period of inactivity during which the body can manufacture and store a supply of these molecules for future use during the next period of activity. Furthermore, sleep allows the body to repair cellular damages that has accumulated during waking hours. Experimental evidence shows that when animals are deprived of sleep, their immune system quickly weakens and death rates increase. Sleep is necessary for animals to prevent accumulation of damage and to regenerate crucial biomolecules for daily life.

An animal is deprived of sleep for three days. According to Scientist 1?

Possible Answers:

The animal will die.

The animal will need to eat less food.

The animal will become nocturnal.

The animal will have low energy levels.

The animal will be prone to illness.

Correct answer:

The animal will have low energy levels.

Explanation:

Scientist 1 argues that sleep is necessary in order to conserve energy. Thus, if an animal is deprived of sleep, they will have lower energy.

Scientist 2, however, might argue that the animal would become sick.

Example Question #3 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

A scientific experiment is conducted to test if calcium can affect gene regulation. Scientists hypothesize that high levels of calcium would interact with the proteins Cs3 and Gfy, which in turn would increase the transcription of genes F4597 and BC392. The experiment procedure is summarized below.

 

  1. Isolate the genes F4597 and BC392.
  2. Create a vector within yeast cells containing the two genes
  3. Culture yeast cells
  4. Grow yeast cells in different growth mediums—one medium lacking calcium (plate A), and one medium with supplemented calcium (plate B)

If the experiment showed that calcium increased F4597 gene activity but decreased BC392 activity, what could one conclude? 

Possible Answers:

Calcium decreases the activity of protein Gfy. 

Calcium increases the activity of protein Cs3. 

One cannot make a conclusion about the veracity of the hypothesis. 

The hypothesis has been proved. 

The hypothesis has been disproved. 

Correct answer:

The hypothesis has been disproved. 

Explanation:

The hypothesis stated the calcium manipulation would increase F4597 and BC392 activity; therefore, a result that showed decreased activity in the BC392 gene would contradict the hypothesis. Further, the hypothesis mentions that the calcium would "interact" with the proteins, but does not specific what type of interaction whether it be an increase or decrease of protein activity. 

Example Question #4 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

A scientific experiment is conducted to test if calcium can affect gene regulation. Scientists hypothesize that high levels of calcium would interact with the proteins Cs3 and Gfy, which in turn would increase the transcription of genes F4597 and BC392. The experiment procedure is summarized below.

 

  1. Isolate the genes F4597 and BC392.
  2. Create a vector within yeast cells containing the two genes
  3. Culture yeast cells
  4. Grow yeast cells in different growth mediums—one medium lacking calcium (plate A), and one medium with supplemented calcium (plate B)

What new information would weaken this experiment? 

Possible Answers:

Calcium is shown to have significant impacts on all proteins. 

Another experiment with results showing Ca++ levels affected a different protein Hrt and increased activity of the Cp340 gene. 

Another experiment shows potassium increases F4597 gene activity. 

Research showing Na levels did not change the activity of protein Sl298. 

Research showing that Ca++ alone does not affect proteins, but requires a coupling with Ka+ in order to be effective. 

Correct answer:

Research showing that Ca++ alone does not affect proteins, but requires a coupling with Ka+ in order to be effective. 

Explanation:

Researching showing isolated Ca++ does not affect proteins undermines the root of this experimental design and hypothesis because it looks at the sole effects of Ca++ on proteins. 

Example Question #5 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

A scientific experiment is conducted to test if calcium can affect gene regulation. Scientists hypothesize that high levels of calcium would interact with the proteins Cs3 and Gfy, which in turn would increase the transcription of genes F4597 and BC392. The experiment procedure is summarized below.

 

  1. Isolate the genes F4597 and BC392.
  2. Create a vector within yeast cells containing the two genes
  3. Culture yeast cells
  4. Grow yeast cells in different growth mediums—one medium lacking calcium (plate A), and one medium with supplemented calcium (plate B)

Would new information about the lack of absorption of calcium through a growth medium strengthen or weaken this experiment and why?

Possible Answers:

This information would strengthen the experiment because it would add another variable to study.

This information would weaken the experiment because it would decrease the influence of the independent variable (amount of calcium). 

The information would weaken the experiment.

This information would strengthen the experiment because it would increase the range of results.

This information would have no affect on the experiment.

Correct answer:

This information would weaken the experiment because it would decrease the influence of the independent variable (amount of calcium). 

Explanation:

Information showing that calclum is not properly absorbed into growth mediums would weaken the experiment because it would skew the results for Plate B and create a smaller contrast between Plate A and Plate B.

Example Question #6 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

A scientific experiment is conducted to test if calcium can affect gene regulation. Scientists hypothesized that high levels of calcium would interact with the proteins Cs3 and Gfy, which in turn would increase the transcription of genes F4597 and BC392. The experiment procedure is summarized below.

 

  1. Isolate the genes F4597 and BC392.
  2. Create a vector within yeast cells containing the two genes
  3. Culture yeast cells
  4. Grow yeast cells in different growth mediums- one medium lacking calcium (plate A) and one medium with supplemented calcium (plate B)

What result would disprove the hypothesis? 

Possible Answers:

Plate B has increased gene activity while Plate A does not. 

Plate B has vastly increased gene activity while Plate A has only a little gene activity.

Both Plate A and Plate B had equal gene activity. 

All of these outcomes would disprove the hypothesis. 

All of these outcomes would support the hypothesis. 

Correct answer:

Both Plate A and Plate B had equal gene activity. 

Explanation:

If both Plate A and Plate B had equal gene activity, it would mean that calcium levels did not affect the proteins or the gene activity. This would disprove the hypothesis, which stated that calcium would increase the transcription of the genes. 

Example Question #7 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

A scientific experiment is conducted to test if calcium can affect gene regulation. Scientists hypothesized that high levels of calcium would interact with the proteins Cs3 and Gfy, which in turn would increase the transcription of genes F4597 and BC392. The experiment procedure is summarized below.

 

  1. Isolate the genes F4597 and BC392.
  2. Create a vector within yeast cells containing the two genes
  3. Culture yeast cells
  4. Grow yeast cells in different growth mediums- one medium lacking calcium (plate A) and one medium with supplemented calcium (plate B)

What might it suggest if both plates were found to have no gene activity?

Possible Answers:

All of the statements could be reasons for no gene activity within the plates. 

There was contamination at one or several steps in the experiment that prevented the yeast from growing.  

An outside variable is suppressing the gene activity and masking the results of calcium. 

None of the statements could be reasons for no gene activity within the plates. 

The vectors were done incorrectly and gene activity is not possible regardless of calcium levels. 

Correct answer:

All of the statements could be reasons for no gene activity within the plates. 

Explanation:

All of the possible statements are situations that could exist within this experiment. It is very possible contamination took place. If the vectors were not done properly, then the genes might even be in the yeast cells, which would show up as no gene activity. It is also always possible an outside factor not addressed in the experiment is interferring with the results. 

Example Question #8 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

A new drug is in its clinical trial phase. The graph below shows the data for participants sleep patterns before medication use and then after using the medication for three months. Series 1 shows the average hours slept a night for each participant prior to medication. Series 2 shows the average hours slept a night for each participant after three months of use. The average hours slept a night was obtained by recording sleep every night for one month, and then finding the average. Patients one through five took a placebo pil, not the actual Moonlight medication. Note: The y-axis is measured in hours slept a night, while the x-axis lists each anonymous patient numerically.

 

 

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If Patient 1, Patient 2, and Patient 3 were all females, you could infer from the data given that __________.

Possible Answers:

only females reported a placebo effect

there was not a difference in the strength of the placebo affect between females and males

males reported a smaller placebo effect than the females reported

only males reported a placebo effect

females reported a smaller placebo effect than the males reported

Correct answer:

females reported a smaller placebo effect than the males reported

Explanation:

The placebo was given to patient 1 through patient 5; patient 4 and patient 5 are males. Patient 4 and Patient 5 reported a much larger increase in average hours slept a night, while the female patients given the placebo reported a smaller change in average hours slept a night. According to the chart, the first three patients saw an average increase of about one hour of sleep a night. Patient 4 and Patient 5 saw an average increase of at least two hours of sleep a night. 

Example Question #10 : How To Find Research Summary In Biology

 

Scientists studied a species of termites and looked at their foraging habitats across the United States. The termite’s population in a given tree was measured by the level of decomposition within a tree due to the termites eating the bark. The experiment also kept track of the level of shade tolerance for each species of tree. For the species of trees in this experiment, shade tolerance fell into two main categorizes- shade tolerant (ST) and intermediate shade (IS). Lastly, they recorded the average amount of rainfall in that given month for the species location being observed. The chart below summarizes the data. Scientists hypothesized that the level of decomposition would be highest in tree species with a higher average rainfall. In addition, they hypothesized trees allowing more shade would allow for more termites, and in turn more decomposition. 

 

 

Tsuga canadensis

Morus rubra

Pinus

strobus

Acer rubrum

Arbutus

menziesii

Quercus

lobata

Juniperus

scopulorum

Decomposition

(in ccm)

2.38

3.21

1.01

.970

2.89

1.31

4.03

Shade tolerance

ST

ST

IS

IS

ST

IS

ST

Average rainfall

47.27

50.89

43.26

41.65

46.87

44.98

52.75

According to the data in the chart, did the experiment support or disprove their hypothesis? 

Possible Answers:

The data in the chart supports the hypothesis by showing a high level of decomposition in species with higher average rainfall. In addition, trees allowing more shade had lower levels of decomposition. 

The data in the chart supports the hypothesis by showing a low level of decomposition in species with higher average rainfall. In addition, trees allowing more shade had higher levels of decomposition. 

The data in the chart supports the hypothesis by showing a low level of decomposition in species with higher average rainfall. In addition, trees allowing more shade had lower levels of decomposition. 

The data in the chart supports the hypothesis by showing a high level of decomposition in species with higher average rainfall. In addition, trees allowing more shade had higher levels of decomposition. 

The data in the chart supports the hypothesis by showing a high level of decomposition in species with lower average rainfall. In addition, trees allowing more shade had higher levels of decomposition. 

Correct answer:

The data in the chart supports the hypothesis by showing a high level of decomposition in species with higher average rainfall. In addition, trees allowing more shade had higher levels of decomposition. 

Explanation:

As stated in the prompt, scientists hypothesized the level of decomposition would be highest in tree species with a higher average rainfall. In addition, they hypothesized trees allowing more shade would allow for more termites, and in turn more decomposition. 

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