Dr. Jayesh J Sheth : A Luminary Pathologist & Scientist with Over Four Decades of Trailblazing Expertise

Dr. Jayesh J Sheth,   Founder & Chairman

Dr. Jayesh J Sheth

Founder & Chairman

Over the years, the pathology field has witnessed a transformative journey, transitioning from labor-intensive manual processes to streamlined automation. This shift has notably improved the efficiency of delivering reports, ensuring swift access for doctors and patients alike, especially in critical scenarios. While automation and technological advancements have undeniably propelled pathology forward, there's a notable drawback the erosion of dialogue between clinical doctors and pathologists. This loss of interpersonal connection risks reducing pathology to a mechanized process, potentially leading to misinterpretations and unnecessary investigations. Despite this, the benefits of prompt reporting and cost reduction for many procedures remain evident, marking a significant advancement in the field's capabilities.

Dr. Jayesh J Sheth is one of the visionaries with over four decades of expertise in the field. His journey into genetics and endocrinology research began during his master's studies in biochemistry at Sir Harkisondas Hospital in Mumbai in 1978. Under the guidance of Dr. Kumud Patil, he delved into understanding fetal well-being and early anomaly detection during pregnancy, particularly focusing on amniotic fluid composition. His pivotal moment came when he encountered a research article on neural tube defect detection using Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) markers, sparking his interest in prenatal diagnosis. Despite limited resources, he embarked on pioneering research, leading to his first publication on the association of elevated AFP levels with fetal omphalocele. These early experiences instilled a passion for genetics and endocrinology, culminating in the establishment of the foundation for Research in Genetics and Endocrinology (FRIGE) in 1995.

FRIGE, recognized by the Indian government in 2000, stands as a beacon of scientific and industrial research excellence. Dr. Sheth's vision extends beyond diagnosis FRIGE actively engages in research, education, and training initiatives. Through its training courses, FRIGE cultivates a new generation of geneticists and biotechnologists, empowering them to contribute to the field. The organization's collaborations extend globally, from Bangladesh to Iraq, facilitating knowledge exchange and capacity-building in genetics.

Central to FRIGE's mission is democratizing access to genetic healthcare. By training university and government hospital personnel, FRIGE enables the establishment of genetics clinics nationwide. Dr. Sheth emphasizes the pivotal role of genetics in modern medicine, spanning specialties from pediatrics to oncology. Its efforts align with national initiatives, such as the National Task Force on Lysosomal Storage Disorders,
advancing rare disease research and treatment in India. His journey reflects a trajectory of dedication and innovation. His contributions encompass not only diagnosis but also prevention and treatment, underscoring the transformative potential of genetics in healthcare.

Dr.Sheth also was the first scientist to demonstrate about the deficiency of vitamin B12 and vitamin D in Indian population and its impact on human health which we all have witnessed during covid era.

“God has been kind to me, from my small-town roots to global impact. My work has taken me to Geneva, the USA, the UK, and Australia, contributing to a comprehensive understanding of rare diseases, their prevention, and affordable diagnosis. Now, with treatments on the horizon, I’m driven by the mission to enter a new phase bringing hope to countless individuals affected by genetic disorders”, adds Dr. Jayesh J Sheth, Founder and Chairman.

Dr. Jayesh’s contributions encompass not only diagnosis but also prevention & treatment, underscoring the transfor-mative potential of genetics in healthcare

Path to Transformative Healthcare

Dr. Jayesh Sheth's extensive involvement in healthcare and genetic research is evident through his esteemed positions. As a Member of the Gujarat State SSB on ART and Surrogacy and the WHO Technical Committee on Birth Defects, he shapes reproductive health policies and global health initiatives. His leadership roles include Vice President of the Indian Society of Human Genetics and National Task Force Committee Member for Lysosomal Storage Disorders. He is a founder member of the Indian Society of Fetal Medicine and the Indian Society of Inborn Error of Metabolism. His governance extends to boards of rare disease organizations and academic institutions, highlighting his profound impact on healthcare, research, and education.

Dr. Sheth's leadership approach emphasizes humility, continuous learning, and inclusivity. He values being grounded and learning from experts, exemplified during his tenure on the board of Diagnostic Systems Laboratory in the USA in 1995 for almost one decade. His leadership is rooted in collaboration and respect for others' opinions, believing in fostering a sense of belonging within the organization. At FRIGE, the motto centers on learning, contributing to society, and prioritizing integrity over monetary gains. He underscores the importance of remaining a perpetual student, highlighting the necessity for ongoing education in science and pathology. Under his guidance, FRIGE focuses on diverse research projects, including autism, cancer prevention, and advanced genomics, addressing significant health challenges in India. Dr. Sheth's leadership leaves a tangible impact, evident in contributions to public health, such as vitamin supplementation and the identification of hereditary cancers.

Looking ahead, Dr. Sheth envisions an evolution toward preventive healthcare and indigenous technology development at FRIGE. Transitioning from diagnostics, the organization aims to pioneer prevention programs for various diseases, aligning with India's Make in India initiative. Their focus includes developing cutting-edge technologies, such as CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing tools, for personalized medicine and rare genetic disorder therapeutics. He anticipates expanding infrastructure to accommodate these advancements, requiring additional space. With ongoing patent applications and potential commercialization, FRIGE aims to facilitate screening programs and contribute to global healthcare solutions, marking a significant stride towards a future of innovative healthcare interventions.

“I advise budding professionals not to rely solely on advanced instruments but to engage in dialogue with doctors and patients. Treat patients as human beings, guiding them instead of just conducting investigations. Maintain clinical knowledge and remember your duty to patients. Commercialization shouldn't overshadow serving society's needs. Use science for societal goals, not as a money-making tool. As scientists and doctors, our oath is to serve society affordably. This mindset should guide future generations in their practice”, concludes Dr. Jayesh J Sheth.