There are many examples of this but perhaps one of the most relevant to medical mycology involving Aspergillus is the slow progress of the development of the PCR assay for detection & diagnosis of Aspergillosis. We have discussed this in an earlier blog.
One cause of the lack of repeatability of an experiment is that something important changed when the first experiment was repeated - in our example the second group may have used a slightly different strain of Aspergillus or might have used slightly different chemical reagents or methods. For this reason it is important to have standard reference strains of the fungus that everyone has access to, standard reagents that everyone can use and standard methodology with which everyone can perform the experiment.
Although this sounds simple and even obvious it can get very difficult to achieve and can get very demanding on limited resources in each laboratory causing dispute and disappointment.
Not only that there are also resources being allocated to provide services to exend the scope of BEI to include the development of new reagents such as antibodies & recombinant protein expression & purification so as to provide new tools to the whole research community. These services will be available to all research teams all over the world.
These important new services & facilities may well help speed up research and in in relation to Aspergillus in particular could lead to a significant reduction in the time it takes to develop new more rapid diagnostic techniques for aspergillosis which would lead to more effective treatment for everyone.