Garry Shandling Estate Donates $15M to UCLA Medical School

Garry Shandling- v2-Getty-H 2019
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The late comedian underwent surgery for hyperparathyroidism, a rare and occasionally fatal condition, at UCLA's Ronald Reagan Medical Center.

UCLA's David Geffen School of Medicine revealed Monday that it had received a $15.2 million bequest from the estate of comedian Garry Shandling, who underwent surgery at the school's Ronald Reagan Medical Center.

The funds, which will go toward research in the school's endocrinology, diabetes and hypertension, infectious diseases and pancreatic disease units, will create and endow the Garry Shandling Endocrine Surgery Research Fund, the Garry Shandling Infectious Diseases Innovation Fund and the Garry Shandling Pancreatic Diseases Fund, according to UCLA. Remaining funds will go to the newly created Garry Shandling Medical Research Fund.

UCLA also announced on Monday that it had named a multipurpose space in Geffen Hall, its medical building, the Gary Shandling Learning Studio.

"Innovative medical discoveries and breakthrough therapies developed at UCLA have greatly enhanced — and saved — countless lives,” UCLA chancellor Gene Block said in a statement. “Garry Shandling’s bequest is a testament to his belief in what is possible at UCLA, and we are fortunate to have merited his support.”

Shandling underwent surgery at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center for hyperparathyroidism, a rare and occasionally fatal condition, prior to dying in 2016 from a pulmonary embolism. At UCLA, the comedian was treated by Dr. Michael Yeh, the section chief of endocrine surgery, and Dr. Howard Reber, a distinguished professor of surgery.

“To meet the challenge of developing the future of medicine in the detection, treatment and prevention of diseases requires committed philanthropic partners,” Dr. John Mazziotta, vice chancellor for UCLA Health Sciences and CEO of UCLA Health, said in a statement. “Mr. Shandling has created a meaningful legacy by investing in research that will yield life-changing discoveries and help countless patients and their families for years to come.”

The legacy of the Larry Sanders Show star was last in the news in 2018, when HBO released the Judd Apatow-directed documentary The Zen Diaries of Garry Shandling.