But not the kind of experience that necessarily equips one with the critical thinking skills required** for a PhD. That kind of knowledge takes years to acquire. You don't (usually) get it in a masters program, and it's not (usually) absorbed just by working in a lab.
I have two things I'd like to see a person accomplish in a doctoral program:
1) Reading so deeply and critically into the literature of sub-sub-topic X that they are not only the world's expert in that topic at this point in time but that they realize that they are the world's expert.
2) Being able to approach any and all new papers in the literature with the ability to simultaneously maintain the thoughts that "this is all total bullshit" and "this is the awesomez!" with mental citation ticking to justify each position.
Once you are there, you deserve the PhD.