Grammar Patterns

N to n

The 'sensitivity' and 'immunity' group

These nouns refer to a tendency to be affected by something or to suffer from something, or the opposite.
People can develop a natural immunity to malaria after many years' exposure to it.
People with the gene have a predisposition to alcoholism.
But in both types of migraine the headache is accompanied by nausea and vomiting, and intense sensitivity to light and noise.
With many of these nouns, especially addiction, predisposition, resistance, and susceptibility, the preposition to is sometimes followed by an '-ing' clause.
The wood is carefully selected for its resistance to cracking and splitting.
  • addiction
  • allergy
  • immunity
  • intolerance
  • predisposition
  • propensity
  • resistance
  • sensitivity
  • susceptibility
  • tendency
  • tolerance
  • vulnerability
  • There are also two nouns which refer to a person who is affected by something, or likely to be.
    According to one estimate, a third of all children under five in the Third World are undernourished and prey to disease.
  • martyr
  • prey
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