0

Maehara et al, 2011 conducted a research on isolated endophytic fungi/sp from the quinine bark.

What is the specific reason if I have to omit 'the' in this context?

closed as off-topic by TrevorD, tchrist, MetaEd, Kris, Kristina Lopez Aug 29 '13 at 12:31

  • This question does not appear to be about English language and usage within the scope defined in the help center.
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 3
    @des: What tchrist meant was that research is a mass noun in English, and therefore a research is ungrammatical. It has to be quantified like a mass noun. – John Lawler Aug 28 '13 at 3:24
  • 3
    @PersianCat Same as you do with any English mass noun, e.g. water. You wouldn't say "a water" (except in very special circumstances); you would say "the water" if referring to a specific body/sample of water; otherwise you would just say "water". In this case you would just say "X conducted research"; but when referring to a specific research project, you would say "the research which X conducted on Y". – TrevorD Aug 28 '13 at 11:34
  • 2
    This question appears to be off-topic because it is more suited to English Language Learners – TrevorD Aug 28 '13 at 11:35
  • 3
    The phrase do a research seems to have been widely adopted as an idiom in several Asian Englishes. I've heard academics from India, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, China, and Japan all use it. It sounds odd to American ears, however. Dunno about Oz, S.Africa, or elsewhere. – John Lawler Aug 28 '13 at 13:53
  • 1
    @JohnLawler Completely agree! Please add Iranians too!.. :)( .. – Persian Cat Aug 28 '13 at 15:13
1

"The" refers to a specific instance or sample of quinine bark. If you were in the lab and saw a pile of quinine bark you might say to a colleague "I'm going to run a test on the quinine bark," but to the rest of the world there is just quinine bark in general, which is (presumably) what the research hinges on.

0

I agree with @TrevorD that this is more suited to English Language Learners.

Your sentence should be rewritten as follows:

Maehara et al. (2011) conducted research on endophytic fungi sp. isolated from quinine bark.

As @TrevorD explained, "research" and "bark" are mass nouns. So, in the context of your sentence, they do not need articles.

I also moved "isolated" to indicate that the fungi was separated from the bark and imply that the separation was performed as part of the research. If you say, "isolated fungi sp.," it implies that isolation is a property of the fungi.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.