Pioneer of HLA Technology in India: Dr. Mahesh Chandra Vaidya

Late Dr. Mahesh Chandra Vaidya, more famously known as Professor M.C. Vaidya, was an Anatomist who further specialized in Immunology and pioneered the use of (Human Leukocyte Antigen) HLA technology in India at the country's first HLA laboratory in All India Institute of Medical Science, New Delhi. 

Image Credit: AIIMS, New Delhi

Anatomists study the structure and parts of the body and their variations. At his lab, Dr. Vaidya studied the minute anatomical (genetic) differences among humans that affect the risk of development of many diseases. His efforts culminated in an improved understanding of many diseases prevalent in India which were uncommon in the western world, such as leprosy, rheumatic heart disease, etc. 

Moreover, his HLA lab initiated support to organ transplant programs all across India. Because of this HLA support, the chances of success of the organ transplant procedure improve many times, and the risk of transplant rejection is minimized. Furthermore, he, at his laboratory, trained and nurtured many professionals who continue to be the leaders of transplant immunology services and research in India.

Dr. Vaidya belonged to a humble background and completed his M.B.B.S. from Medical College, Nagpur. He pursued his M.D. and Ph.D. in anatomy from AIIMS. His post-doctoral work led him to move to the University of Oxford and the National Institute of Medical Research, United Kingdom. 

Following his return from the UK, he started to teach at AIIMS and conducted many new experiments related to immunology. One of the specialized areas of immunology that was picking up at that time was the application of HLA technology. While being attached to the anatomy department, Dr. Vaidya pioneered and oversaw the development of the HLA lab in the AIIMS as a special unit of the anatomy department. This unit eventually developed into a full-fledged department of transplant immunology, led by a bright disciple of Dr. Vaidya. 

Dr. Vaidya received fellowships, memberships, awards, and organizational responsibilities from several scientific societies and organizations from the fields of anatomy and immunology and was considered a humble and respected professional. He contributed to the disciplines even after retirement from AIIMS by working in the private sector for several years.  

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About the author: Dr. Naval Asija is a licensed MBBS Physician from India. MBBS is the equivalent of the MD degree offered by international medical schools. He is based in Delhi, India, and works as a medical writer, editor, and consultant. He supports medical researches as an author's editor, medical communication companies involved in medico-marketing activities, and medical technology companies in improving their products. He can be contacted via his LinkedIn Profile:
Journey of a non clinical doctor

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