DISCUSSION: This is a tricky question. There’s only one place in the passage where the significance of acquired characteristics is mentioned: lines 37-38. Horizontal acquisition and subsequent inheritance of acquired characteristics seems to have sped up evolution.
The rest of the answers are designed to confuse you. They mix terms from the passage to say things that the passage never said.
- Not even true. Lines 40-45 show that photosynthesis may have developed faster thanks to horizontal transmission. But nothing talks about the speed of photosynthesis itself.
- So, how does the passage say inheriting acquired characteristics helps explain natural selection? If you can’t answer, then this answer isn’t right.
- Non-genetic inherited changes are only discussed in paragraph 2 (bacterial cell walls). This is an acquired characteristic, but the passage doesn’t say whether it’s important that a bacterium can inherit a lack of cell walls.
- CORRECT. Lines 39-40 say that bacteria that inherited acquired characteristics might have sped up the development of photosynthesis.
- Many things can be changed or stopped in experiments. This isn’t significant.
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