Bao Quoc Thai

MD/PhD Student, Bhattacharya Lab, Immunobiology Track

Bao grew up in Vietnam, and moved to the San Francisco Bay Area with his family when he was 14. He attended UC Berkeley and did his undergraduate research in Dr. Christopher Chang's lab studying copper biology in biological systems. After graduation, he worked at UC San Francisco in Dr. Stephen Floor's lab studying mRNAs. There, he had his first experience working with gene editing and stem cells, which he intended to study for his PhD in Dr. Bhattacharya's lab. 

Moving to Arizona was a big change for him, but the community of students and faculty at the UA MD/PhD program was so welcoming, making him feel at home. He found groups of amazing and supportive friends and mentors whom he can rely on. In his first years of medical school, he had wonderful opportunities to immerse himself in a great line of healthcare community service activities. He worked with the Shubitz free family care clinic every month where he got the chance to practice his medical interview and physical exam skills with experienced third and fourth year medical students. One of the most rewarding medical experiences he ever had was traveling to Rocky Point, Mexico with MexZona, a non-profit organization that offers monthly free family care to the community. He was with a group of medical students, undergraduates, physicians, nurses and pharmacists who served over 100 patients that day. He is excited to start his PhD journey and is looking forward to a lot of pipetting! 

In his free time, Bao enjoys watching TV shows and movies, especially anything horror-related. He is a foodie and has been pleasantly surprised at the food scene here in Tucson. Reach out to him if you need recommendations - ramen, curry katsu, KBBQ , pho, Indian food... you name it!


  • BA in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of California, Berkeley in May 2016

Recent Publications


Xiao, T., C. M. Ackerman, E. C. Carroll, S. Jia, A. Hoagland, J. Chan, B. Thai, C. S. Liu, E. Y. Isacoff, and C. J. Chang, "Copper regulates rest-activity cycles through the locus coeruleus-norepinephrine system.", Nat Chem Biol, vol. 14, issue 7, pp. 655-663, 2018 07. PMCID: PMC6008210  PMID: 29867144
Thai, B., and S. N. Floor, "Move Over, Genomes: Here Comes Transcriptome Engineering.", CRISPR J, vol. 1, pp. 126-127, 2018 04. PMID: 31021197