1) Berk LS, Felten DL, Tan SA, Bittman BB, Westengard J.

Altern Ther Health Med. 2001 Mar;7(2):62-72, 74-6.


Modulation of neuroimmune parameters during the eustress of humor-associated mirthful laughter.

Center for Neuroimmunology, School of Medicine, School of Public Health, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, Calif., USA.

CONTEXT: Humor therapy and the related mirthful laughter are suggested to have preventive and healing effects. Although these effects may be mediated by neuroendocrine/neuroimmune modulation, specific neuroimmune parameters have not been fully investigated. OBJECTIVE: To determine the efficacy of mirthful laughter to modulate neuroimmune parameters in normal subjects. DESIGN: A series of 5 separate studies based on a multivariate repeated measures design, with post hoc simple contrast analysis. SETTING: The schools of medicine and public health at
Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, Calif. SUBJECTS: 52 healthy men. INTERVENTION: Viewing of a humor video for 1 hour. Blood samples were taken 10 minutes before, 30 minutes into, and 30 minutes and 12 hours after the intervention. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Natural killer cell activity; plasma immunoglobulins; functional phenotypic markers for leukocytes including activated T cells, nonactivated T cells, B cells, natural killer cells, T cells with helper and suppressor markers, and assessment of plasma volume and compartmental shifts; plasma cytokine--interferon-gamma; and total leukocytes with subpopulations of lymphocytes, granulocytes, and monocytes. RESULTS: Increases were found in natural killer cell activity (P < .01); immunoglobulins G (P < .02), A (P < .01), and M (P < .09), with several immunoglobulin effects lasting 12 hours into recovery from initiation of the humor intervention; functional phenotypic markers for leukocyte subsets such as activated T cells (P < .01), active cytotoxic T cells (P < .01), natural killer cells (P = .09), B cells (P < .01), helper T cells (P < .02), uncommitted T cells with helper and suppressor markers (P < .02), helper/suppressor ratio (P = .10) with several leukocyte subset increase effects lasting 12 hours after the humor experience; the cytokine interferon-gamma (P = .02), with increases lasting 12 hours; total leukocytes (P < .05), with specific subpopulation lymphocytes during the intervention (P < .01) and 90 minutes into recovery (P < .05); and granulocytes during the intervention (P < .05) and 90 minutes following the intervention (P < .01). CONCLUSION: Modulation of neuroimmune parameters during and following the humor-associated eustress of laughter may provide beneficial health effects for wellness and a complementary adjunct to whole-person integrative medicine therapies.


2) http://www.aath.org/Fry_PWintro.html

"Dr. Fry is a psychiatrist and professor emeritus of Stanford University School of Medicine. He is also a recognized humor researcher and perhaps the most influential person to effect the growth and development of therapeutic humor over the last 50 years. Let me tell you a bit of history, which brings Dr. Fry to the platform tonight.




3) Sigmund Freud, Il Motto di Spirito, Rizzoli Editore


4) Mario Farné ha pubblicato un libro, "Guarir dal ridere" (Bollati Boringhieri)


5) Adams P.
Postgrad Med J. 2002 Aug;78(922):447-8.


Humour and love: the origination of clown therapy.
Gesundheit Institute, Arlington, VA 22213, USA. Heidi@SillyStuff.org


6) Mathew FM.

Nurs J India. 2003 Jul;94(7):146-7.


Laughter is the best medicine: the value of humour in current nursing practice.

7) Mayo Clin Womens Healthsource. 1999 Jul;3(7):7.


Laughter and medicine. How humor can help you heal.


8) Brain. 2003 Oct;126(Pt 10):2121-38. Epub 2003 Aug 05.


Neural correlates of laughter and humour.
Wild B, Rodden FA, Grodd W, Ruch W.
Department of Psychiatry, University of Tubingen, Tubingen, Germany. bawild@med.uni-tuebingen.de

Although laughter and humour have been constituents of humanity for thousands if not millions of years, their systematic study has begun only recently. Investigations into their neurological correlates remain fragmentary and the following review is a first attempt to collate and evaluate these studies, most of which have been published over the last two decades. By employing the classical methods of neurology, brain regions associated with symptomatic (pathological) laughter have been determined and catalogued under other diagnostic signs and symptoms of such conditions as epilepsy, strokes and circumspect brain lesions. These observations have been complemented by newer studies using modern non-invasive imaging methods. To summarize the results of many studies, the expression of laughter seems to depend on two partially independent neuronal pathways. The first of these, an 'involuntary' or 'emotionally driven' system, involves the amygdala, thalamic/hypo- and subthalamic areas and the dorsal/tegmental brainstem. The second, 'voluntary' system originates in the premotor/frontal opercular areas and leads through the motor cortex and pyramidal tract to the ventral brainstem. These systems and the laughter response appear to be coordinated by a laughter-coordinating centre in the dorsal upper pons. Analyses of the cerebral correlates of humour have been impeded by a lack of consensus among psychologists on exactly what humour is, and of what essential components it consists. Within the past two decades, however, sufficient agreement has been reached that theory-based hypotheses could be formulated and tested with various non-invasive methods. For the perception of humour (and depending on the type of humour involved, its mode of transmission, etc.) the right frontal cortex, the medial ventral prefrontal cortex, the right and left posterior (middle and inferior) temporal regions and possibly the cerebellum seem to be involved to varying degrees. An attempt has been made to be as thorough as possible in documenting the foundations upon which these burgeoning areas of research have been based up to the present time.


9) Pediatr Pulmonol. 2003 Aug;36(2):107-12.


Mirth-triggered asthma: is laughter really the best medicine?
Liangas G, Morton JR, Henry RL.
School of Women's and Children's Health, University of New South Wales, New South Wales, Australia.

Mirthful emotions such as laughter and excitement are unrecognized but perhaps important triggers of asthma. Our study aimed to explore the prevalence, mechanisms, and associations of mirth-triggered asthma (MTA) in children. Our MTA prevalence questionnaire was given to 285 children who presented to the Emergency Department of
Sydney Children's Hospital (SCH) with an acute episode of asthma. Our MTA profile questionnaire study was a cross-sectional study of 541 children with asthma. The parents completed a questionnaire regarding their child's asthma. In our laughter diary study, diary cards were given to the parents of 21 children with asthma. The diary required details regarding the mirthful stimulus, symptoms of asthma, and recording of peak expiratory flow (PEF) measurements. Of the selected cohort, 31.9% had mirth-triggered asthma. In the cross-sectional study, mirth-triggered asthma was more common: with increasing age (P = 0.02); in those who in the last 3 months had taken more doses of salbutamol (P = 0.005), and who had more wheeze, nocturnal symptoms, and early morning symptoms (P < 0.0005); and in those who reported exercise-induced asthma (P < 0.0005). Laughter was more commonly reported as a trigger than excitement; cough was the most prominent symptom; and symptoms mostly occurred within 2 min of the mirthful stimulus. In the laughter diary study, 59 of 130 recorded events described symptoms of asthma. Mirth while watching a film led to PEF of 73% of baseline, compared with 81% for mirth with exertional play, and 95% for mirth with nonexertional play (P = 0.01). Mirth-triggered asthma is common, and is an indicator of suboptimal asthma control.


10) Bennett MP, Zeller JM, Rosenberg L, McCann J.
Altern Ther Health Med. 2003 Mar-Apr;9(2):38-45.


The effect of mirthful laughter on stress and natural killer cell activity.
Indiana State University School of Nursing, Terre Haute, Ind., USA.

CONTEXT: A recent survey of rural Midwestern cancer patients revealed that humor was one of the most frequently used complementary therapies. Psychoneuroimmunology research suggests that, in addition to its established psychological benefits, humor may have physiological effects on immune functioning. OBJECTIVE: To determine the effect of laughter on self-reported stress and natural killer cell activity. DESIGN: Randomized, pre-post test with comparison group. SETTING:
Indiana State University Sycamore Nursing Center, which is a nurse-managed community health clinic in a mid-sized, Midwestern city. PARTICIPANTS: 33 healthy adult women. INTERVENTION: Experimental subjects viewed a humorous video while subjects in the distraction control group viewed a tourism video. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Self-reported stress and arousal (Stress Arousal Check List), mirthful laughter (Humor Response Scale), and immune function (chromium release natural killer [NK] cell cytotoxicity assay). RESULTS: Stress decreased for subjects in the humor group, compared with those in the distraction group (U32 = 215.5; P = .004). Amount of mirthful laughter correlated with postintervention stress measures for persons in the humor group (r16 = -.655; P = .004). Subjects who scored greater than 25 on the humor response scale had increased immune function postintervention (t16 = 2.52 P = .037) and compared with the remaining participants (t32 = 32.1; P = .04). Humor response scale scores correlated with changes in NK cell activity (r16 = .744; P = 001). CONCLUSION: Laughter may reduce stress and improve NK cell activity. As low NK cell activity is linked to decreased disease resistance and increased morbidity in persons with cancer and HIV disease, laughter may be a useful cognitive-behavioral intervention.


11) Neuhoff CC, Schaefer C.
Psychol Rep. 2002 Dec;91(3 Pt 2):1079-80.


Effects of laughing, smiling, and howling on mood.

Fairleigh Dickinson University, Hackensack, NJ 07601, USA.

This study examined the effects of forced laughter on mood and compared laughter with two other possible mood-improving activities, smiling and howling. While howling did not substantially improve mood, both smiling and laughing did. Moreover, laughter seemed to boost positive affect more than just smiling by 22 adults.


12) Sanz Ortiz J.
Med Clin (Barc). 2002 Nov 30;119(19):734-7.


Therapeutic value of humor
[Article in Spanish]
Servicio de Oncologia Medica y Cuidados Paliativos. Hospital Universitario Marques de Valdecilla. Facultad de Medicina.
Universidad de Cantabria. Santander. Espana. oncsoj@humb.es


13) Weiss R.
Health Prog. 2002 Sep-Oct;83(5):11, 54.


Initiative proves laughter is the best medicine.



14) Howe NE.
Med Hypotheses. 2002 Sep;59(3):252-4.


The origin of humor.
Michigan, Trenton, USA. normhowe_2000@yahoo.com

Humor is spread throughout every culture on earth and occupies a large portion of our literature and social interaction. It is so deeply rooted in our culture that it may be a defining characteristic of our species. Yet there has been comparatively little effort to understand its origin. According to the Accepted Theory of Humor all jokes begin with a buildup of tension while an initial paradigm is formed. When the punch line occurs the subject must realign his thinking to accommodate the differences between the initial paradigm and the sudden burst of new information. The Mind Reading Hypothesis extends the accepted theory of humor to include a relationship between the observer and the subject of the humor. The actual source of amusement is the observation of the resolution in the mind of the subject of the collision between old perception and new reality.


15) Rosner F.
Cancer Invest. 2002;20(3):434-6.


Therapeutic efficacy of laughter in medicine.
Department of Medicine,
Mount Sinai Services, Queens Hospital Center, 82-68 164th Street, Jamaica, New York 11432, USA.


16) Fieldhouse F.

Nurs Older People. 2001 Mar;13(1):33.


Laughter still the best medicine.

 17) Houben M.

Pflege Z. 2002 Apr;55(4):279-80.


[Humor training: mastering daily routine with a laugh]
[Article in German]

18)  LeNavenec CL, Slaughter S.
Nurs Times. 2001 Jul 26-Aug 1;97(30):42-3.


Laughter can be the best medicine.
University of Calgary, Alberta.


19) Cornelia B, Elvira U.

Krankenpfl Soins Infirm. 1999 Dec;92(12):11-3.


Humor in nursing care. Laughter frees life forces
[Article in German]


20) Moore DB.

Adv Nurse Pract. 2000 Aug;8(8):34-7.


Make them laugh. Therapeutic humor for patients with grief-related stress or anxiety.