Breast cancer: Robot scientist finds 70 per cent of studies aren’t reproducible

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A robot scientist repeated experiments from 74 studies on breast cancer cells, and only 22 yielded the expected result, suggesting researchers may need to report their work more carefully



Health



5 April 2022

Female biological laboratory researcher working on biomedical experiments. Scientific genetics medical worker pipetting cell culture.. back view Close-up; Shutterstock ID 2035730375; purchase_order: -; job: -; client: -; other: -

A researcher in a biomedical lab

Shutterstock / Drotyk Roman

Fewer than 1 in 3 breast cancer cell studies are reproducible, according to an analysis that used a robot to partly automate experiments. This doesn’t necessarily mean the findings aren’t accurate, but could suggest that researchers need to report their work more carefully.

Reproducibility – or the ability for other researchers to replicate the results of experiments in their own labs – is a cornerstone of the scientific method, but it isn’t often put to the test. “There are unbelievable numbers of …

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