Research Team

Armando Villarreal, MD, MBA

Dr. Armando Villarreal, recently joined the Neuromedicine Pain Management Center as an Assistant professor. Prior to his arrival, he served as the Chairman of the Pain Medicine Department at Gundersen-Lutheran Neuroscience Center in Wisconsin. During his term, he supervised the Anesthesiology residency rotation at the Pain Clinic from the University of Minnesota. He was involved on several research projects, one of which was recently submitted for publication. His area of interest is neuropathic pain and the use of neuromodulation techniques.

Dr. Villarreal is member of the Educational committee of the American Academy of Pain Medicine, as well as the Credential committee of the American Board of Pain Medicine and the emergent technologies committee of the North American Neuromodulation Society. Dr. Villarreal is board certified in Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine.

Dr. Villarreal trained in Anesthesiology at Temple University and did a fellowship in Pain Management at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. He completed medical school at the University of Panama, School of Medicine. He also completed a Masters in Business Administration from University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, MN.

Shirley Rast, MSN, FNP-BC, Pain-C

Shirley Rast is a full time Nurse Practitioner with the Neuromedicine Pain Management Center and Translational Pain Research Program where she provides comprehensive care for patients with chronic pain. She uses special and complex experience in medical management of chronic pain. She coordinate’s patient care with referring and primary care providers. Shirley holds a Bachelor's degree in Nursing from Seton Hall University and a Master’s degree in Science of Nursingfrom St. John Fisher College. She is licensed in New York State as a Family Nurse practitioner and is certified by the American Nurse‘s Credentialing Center as a Family Nurse Practitioner and in Pain Management. She is a member of the American Pain Society and the Greater Rochester Nurse Practitioner Association where she serves as Membership Chair.

Maria Frazer, BS, CCRC

A graduate of the State University of New York at Fredonia, Maria Frazer holds a Bachelor's degree in Biology. She coordinates neuropathic pain clinical trials in Translational Pain Research for the department of Neurosurgery under Director Dr. John Markman. She is certified as a Clinical Research Coordinator (CCRC) through the Academy of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP). She is also certified in Continuous Learning for Administrators of Sponsored Programs (CLASP). She maintains Good Clinical Practice (GCP) compliance through the University of Rochester's Human Subject Protection Program (HSPP).

Maria works closely with patient care and actively recruits patient volunteers, organizes clinical trial activities and manages regulatory requirements. Maria is published in the Journal of Molecular Therapy, Glia, Geriatrics & Aging, and Netter Neurology Atlas. Her work is also included in abstracts at conferences from American Academy of Neurology, American Association of Neurological Surgeons, American Academy of Pain Medicine, American Society for Gene Therapy, Congress of Neurological Surgeons, Mechanisms and Treatment of Neuropathic Pain, Neuroscience, State Society of Aging and World Congress of Pain.

Michelle Dugan, MSN, FNP-BC

Michelle Dugan received her Bachelor’s degree in Nursing from University of Rochester and her Masters’ degree in Science of Nursing from Saint John Fisher. She is licensed in New York State as a Family Nurse practitioner and is certified by American Nurses Credentialing Center as a Family Nurse Practitioner. She has also held certification as a Legal Nurse Consultant. She is a member of the New York State Nurse Practitioner’s Association, the American Nephrology Nurse’s Association, and the American Thoracic Outlet Syndrome Association. She serves as Adjunct Faculty at the University of Rochester School of Nursing. She is a member of the Advanced Practice Nursing Advisory Group for the Margaret Sovie Center for Advanced Practice at the University of Rochester. Her area of interest and publications is Neurogenic Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. She participates in Clinical Research with the departments Translational Pain Research Division.