Research in the Bhattacharya Lab merges the fields of stem cell biology and immunology to understand the basic biology of lymphocyte development, and to develop creative translational strategies to combat infectious disease.
Lucas received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Mumbai and went on to complete his Ph.D. from the National Institute of Immunology in New Delhi in 2016. He joined the lab in 2017 and since has been working to define why certain antibody specificities dominate an immune response to viral infections, and how the plasma cells that produce these antibodies persist. Outside of the lab, he enjoys going to movies, exploring new locations and cultures as well as enjoying the local cuisine.
Hannah received her bachelor’s degree from Purdue University and her PhD from Washington University in St. Louis. She moved with the Bhattacharya lab in 2017 to continue working on her thesis project. Hannah is establishing the metabolic mechanisms of stem cell differentiation and designing strategies to overcoming immune barriers to stem cell transplantation.
Colin Fields grew up in Middletown, MD and received his bachelor's degrees in microbiology and biochemistry from the University of Maryland, College Park in 2020. While at UMD, Colin completed an honors thesis investigating the use of bacteriophages as a therapeutic and sensitizing agent for multi-drug resistant Acinetobacter baumannii infections. He also spent the winters and summers working as a research volunteer under Dr. Shirin Munir in the RNA Viruses Section at the NIH’s main campus in Bethesda. At the NIH, his research focused on designing vaccines for parainfluenza and respiratory syncytial viruses and investigating the glycobiology of the PIV3 F and HN proteins. After graduating from UMD, Colin moved to Tucson during the summer of 2020 to start his MD/PhD training at the University of Arizona. He joined the Bhattacharya Lab at the start of 2022 after finishing his first 2 years of medical school where his research focuses on stem cell engineering with the ultimate goal of developing cellular therapeutics.
In his free time, Colin enjoys volunteering at the UA VETS center, hiking, growing plants, and riding his motorcycle.
Tyler grew up in Hastings, Nebraska before attending Midland University, where he graduated in 2017 with a BS in Biology. He entered the ABBS program and joined the Bhattacharya lab in March of 2018. Tyler’s work focuses primarily on better understanding the mechanisms related to transcription factors that affect antibody responses in plasma cells and memory B-cells. Outside of science, Tyler enjoys sports, movies, and the many restaurants of Tucson.
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!