Aruni Bhatnagar is the director of University of Louisville’s Christina Lee Brown Envirome Institute. The Envirome Institute studies people and neighborhoods in Louisville to better understand how the environment affects human health – with a focus on cardiovascular health. One of the Envirome Institute’s best-known projects is the The Green Heart Project, which looks at the health effects of having trees in urban spaces. This research has been featured in the World Economic Forum, The Atlantic, PBS NewsHour and Discover Magazine.
Bhatnagar came to the University of Louisville in 1998 and currently leads over 20 researchers and 32 projects. He is a professor and distinguished university scholar in the Institute of Molecular Cardiology, professor of medicine and professor of biochemistry and molecular biology. He was elected a fellow of the American Heart Association in 2005 and is a Distinguished University Scholar and Fellow of the American Heart Association.
Bhatnagar is a graduate of Kanpur University, India and received his post-doctoral training at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston.
Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of the death in the U.S. and globally. Louisville has some of the highest rates of heart disease in the country and some of the worst air quality in the state. The Envirome Institute’s work will help us better understand the enviroment’s role in these conditions. This year, the Envirome Institute received a Centers for Disease Control grant to study how to better use wastewater testing to track contagious diseases, like COVID-19. This is the only study of its kind in the country and will help Louisville become the first city to document herd immunity of Sars-COVID-19.
For more information about the Envirome Institute, visit enviromeinstitute.com.