Gregory A. Nichols, PhD


Gregory Nichols, PhD, combines scientific training and policy vision with a hands-on understanding of the complexities of obtaining and analyzing health-utilization data. Dr. Nichols constructed Kaiser Permanente Northwest's Diabetes Registry in 1989 and has used it to conduct health services, economic, and epidemiologic research studies on patients before and after diabetes diagnosis. A recent focus of his work has been anti-hyperglycemic treatment failure in type 2 diabetes (T2D), and the development of decision rules to assist clinicians in responding to this type of treatment failure.

Other areas of interest include cardiovascular disease and depression, as well as the precursors to both diabetes and cardiovascular disease, commonly known as metabolic syndrome. Dr. Nichols recently led the creation of an 11-site diabetes registry that involves HMO research partners from around the United States. Other projects include studies of the association between hyperglycemia and cardiovascular disease, studies of diabetes incidence among patients with prediabetes, and a study assessing the proportion of patients with T2D who control cardiometabolic risk factors such as blood pressure, cholesterol level, and A1C, either alone or in combination, and their association with cardiovascular-disease hospitalization. Dr. Nichols participates in several multi-site studies that combine data from Kaiser Permanente Northwest and other Kaiser Permanente regions.

Before becoming a Center for Health Research Investigator, Dr. Nichols served as a senior research associate at CHR, a rate analyst for Kaiser Permanente, and a financial analyst for the Northrop Corporation. He holds a PhD in public administration and policy from Portland State University and an MBA from Pepperdine University.

Selected Publications

  • Nichols GA, Rosales AG, Kimes TM, Tunceli K, Kurtyka K, Mavros P, Steiner JF. Impact on Glycated Haemoglobin of a Biologic Response-Based Measure of Medication Adherence. Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism 2015;17(9);843-848.
  • Nichols GA, Schroeder EB, Karter AJ, Gregg EW, Desai J, Lawrence JM, O’Connor PJ, Xu S, Newton KM, Raebel MA, Pathak RD, Waitzfelder B, Segal J, Elston Lafata J, Butler MG, Kirchner HL, Thomas A, Steiner JF, for the SUPREME-DM Study Group. Trends in Diabetes Incidence Among 7 Million Insured Adults, 2006-2011: The SUPREME-DM Project. Am J Epidemiol 2015;181(1):32-39.
  • Nichols GA, Rosales AG, Perrin NA, Fortmann SP. The Association Between Different A1C-Based Measures of Glycemia and Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Hospitalization. Diabetes Care 2014;37(1):167-172.
  • Nichols GA, Joshua-Gotlib S, Parasuraman S. Glycemic Control and Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Hospitalization and All-Cause Mortality. J Am Coll Cardiol 2013;62(2):121-127.
  • Nichols GA, Joshua-Gotlib S, Parasuraman S. Independent Contribution of A1C, Systolic Blood Pressure, and LDL Cholesterol Control to Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Hospitalizations in Type 2 Diabetes: An Observational Cohort Study. J Gen Intern Med 2013;28(5):691-697 DOI 10.1007/s11606-012-2320-1.
  • Nichols GA, Desai J, Elston Lafata J, Lawrence JM, O'Connor PJ, Pathak RD, Raebel MA, Reid RJ, Selby JV, Silverman BG, Steiner JF, Stewart WF, Vupputurri S, Waitzfelder B, On behalf of the SUPREME-DM Study Group. Construction of a Multi-Site DataLink Using Electronic Health Records for the Identification, Surveillance, Prevention, and Management of Diabetes Mellitus: The SUPREME-DM Project. Prev Chronic Dis 2012;9:110311. DOI: http://dx/
  • Nichols GA, Moler EJ. Cardiovascular Disease, Heart Failure, Chronic Kidney Disease, and Depression Independently Increase the Risk of Incident Diabetes. Diabetologia 2011;54:523-526.

Press Release

In Preventing Diabetes-Related Heart Disease, Blood Pressure and Cholesterol Targets Are Higher Priorities Than Blood Sugar

For people with diabetes, meeting the recommended guidelines for blood pressure and cholesterol is even more important than meeting the guidelines for blood sugar control in reducing the risk of heart attack or stroke, according to a new Kaiser Permanente study published today in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Jan 28 2013

Press Release

Eleven Integrated Health Systems Form Largest Private-Sector Diabetes Registry in United States

Researchers Use Database of More Than One Million Diverse Diabetes Patients to Find Better Treatment & Prevention Strategies

Jun 7 2012

Press Release

Starting Treatment Early Doubles Chance of Success for People with Diabetes

The sooner people with diabetes start taking metformin, the longer the drug remains effective, according to a Kaiser Permanente study published in the March issue of Diabetes Care, a journal of the American Diabetes Association.

Mar 09, 2010