In a first of a kind study by an Indian- American researcher Sanjay Rajagopalan based at the university hospitals Harrington, a comparison of the effects of air pollution were compared to that of a high-fat diet.
Rajagopalan created an environment similar to that of a highly polluted New Delhi or Beijing to study its effects on a mouse modeled study. In the experiment Rajagopalan studied three different groups, the first being given a steady dosage of fresh air, The second group was exposed to a polluted environment for 24 weeks and the third was fed a high fat based diet.
The experiment concluded that a highly polluted environment had similar effects on the development of cardiometabolic diseases that the high-fat diet had. Type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance showed an increase in the highly polluted environment, the research also showed the increase in chances of heart-based diseases and concluded that in a pre-diabetic state there were still Abnormalities in insulin production and metabolism.
The research that was published in the journal of clinical later concluded that these effects were a result of the epigenome which plays a role as a critical buffer to environmental changes. These effects were reversible according to the experiment at least as the mice seemed healthier once exposed to the cleaner environment.