Replicability of scientific results

Excellent description by Jonah Lehrer in “The Truth Wears Off” (The New Yorker) on the importance of confirming experimental findings in different laboratories:

Before the effectiveness of a drug can be confirmed, it must be tested and tested again. Different scientists in different labs need to repeat the protocols and publish their results. The test of replicability, as it’s known, is the foundation of modern research. Replicability is how the community enforces itself. It’s a safeguard for the creep of subjectivity. Most of the time, scientists know what results they want, and that can influence the results they get. The premise of replicability is that the scientific community can correct for these flaws.

Mr. Lehrer’s article is about drug effectiveness, but his words apply equally to other types of science, including virology.