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Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Newsletter
May, 2000


Bill Marx, son of Harpo Marx, gets a grin from Justin Ybarra at UCLA Children’s Hospital. The visit marked the start of a unique five-year experiment to determine whether humor may help heal children with serious illnesses. Created by Sherry Dunay Hilber, Rx Laughter is supported by the Television Academy, Comedy Central and other industry organizations. “We have a pretty good idea about the impact that laughter and humor can have on a person’s mental well-being,” said Dr. Lonnie Zeltzer, pictured behind Marx. “But no one has really looked with any depth at the possible biologic links between health, having a good sense of humor and even the act of laughter itself. We’ll study the impact that both humor and laughter have on the immune system and pain transmission and control.” Zeltzer, one of the project’s principal researchers, is director of the Pediatric Pain Program at Mattel Children’s Hospital at UCLA.

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Bill Marx (Harpo Marx's son), Justin Ybarra an inpatient at the Mattel Children's Hospital at UCLA, and Lonnie Zeltzer, M.D., Director of the Pediatric Program at UCLA. Photo Courtesy of UCLA Today.



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