Research of Kevin Peterson

headshot of Kevin PetersonKevin Peterson, MD, MPH, focuses his translational and practice-based research on a broad range of areas, including diabetes management and medical technology. He has been funded by the five different institutes within the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and other organizations. He was the first faculty in the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health to receive a National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant in 1998.

Dr. Peterson is also the co-founder and Director of the Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians Research Network (MAFPRN), one of the oldest practice-based research networks in the country. The MAFPRN represents over 17,500 practices and over 70,000 primary care doctors.

As PI for UNITED, Dr. Peterson is focusing on how to provide better diabetes care within a primary care clinical setting. This study, funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), partners with Medica and the Health Partners Research Foundation to assess 63 different care management systems employed across all primary care practices in the state of Minnesota. With over 250,000 patients, the resulting data set is the most comprehensive of its kind in the country.

Dr. Peterson is also PI of the NIH-funded ACCORD study, which demonstrated that not all diabetic patients benefit from intensive A1C lowering, as well as its follow-up, ACCORDIAN, which examines the long-term effects of ACCORD treatment strategies on cardiovascular risk factors.

An advocate for conducting clinical trials in community settings and advancing the research mission of family medicine, Dr. Peterson built a clinical trials unit at Phalen Village Family Medicine Clinic, where he practices as a physician. He also conducted clinical trials at Phalen for ASPREE, a National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) study that found aspirin is not an effective primary prevention strategy for healthy individuals over seventy.

Dr. Peterson has licensed a variety of medical technologies and developed patents for others, including a retinal scanner to screen for diabetes retinopathy. He is currently collaborating with an artificial intelligence (AI) company to incorporate that technology into primary care.  

As an educator, Dr. Peterson teaches a diabetes outpatient course for medical students and mentors students in engineering, medicine, and nursing. He also sees patients at Phalen Village Family Medicine Clinic.

See Dr. Peterson's full bio