“Replication, the ability of another lab to reproduce a finding, is the gold standard of science, reassurance that you have discovered something true. But that is getting harder all the time. With the most accessible truths already discovered, what remains are often subtle effects, some so delicate that they can be conjured up only under ideal circumstances, using highly specialized techniques.
“Scientists talk about “tacit knowledge[“,] the years of mastery it can take to perform a technique. The image they convey is of an experiment as unique as a Rembrandt.”
What remains to be discovered ARE subtle effects, which I think accounts for why so many experiments cannot be replicated. We’re getting down to a very fine level in biology now, where anything can skew your results.