Many university teaching labs are empty as students have been moved off campus during the pandemic. There are other ways to put theory into practice, at home and online.
Considerable effort has gone into improving laboratory services in many African countries. But the quality of tests is questionable.
They may be single-celled organisms, but as our distant cousins amoeba can tell us a lot about ourselves.
Developing new technologies requires time-consuming, expensive and even dangerous experiments. But now we can carry out many experiments entirely on computers using modelling.
Scientists build on knowledge gained and published by others. How can we know which findings to trust?
In the science world, laboratories are essential but safety precautions should be taken to prevent any incidents like the Ebola outbreak or biochemical attacks.