In W. P. Hanage’s article, he discusses the importance of five key questions when interpreting scientific literature:
- Can experiments detect differences that matter?
- Does the study show causation or correlation?
- What is the mechanism?
- How much do experiments reflect reality?
- Could anything else explain the results?
Starting with describing the significance of each and then which one is most helpful when discussing controversy.
The first question is important when looking for finer distinctions which technology today allows us to do. This is really important to closely related genes. Next we look at causation and correlation. This is important when looking at different factors and connections with microbiomes. Mechanism is going further than just looking at the causal relationship by determining the factors with multiple experiments. The experiments question looks at how symptoms may effect actual ill people rather than things that may just come up in an experiment. The last question is important because everybody is so different. This could take in to account diet, disease, etc.
When discussing controversy, I think the last question is most important. This is because usually when there are different views or opinions you use evidence to back yourself up. Sometimes the evidence can be different depending on the sample or technique used which is why asking what else could explain the results may help to clear something up.