ESP Biography



ANDREW THOMPSON, ESP Teacher




Major: Biology/Pathology

College/Employer: MIT

Year of Graduation: Not available.

Picture of Andrew Thompson

Brief Biographical Sketch:

A former student of ESP from 1990. Teaching at ESP as time allows since 1992.
Interested in medicine, chemistry and the outdoors. I spend most of my time looking for cancer and inflammation in the Pathology dept. of Harvard medical School.



Past Classes

  (Clicking a class title will bring you to the course's section of the corresponding course catalog)

S14292: ADME stories of p̶a̶t̶h̶o̶l̶o̶g̶y̶ pharmacology in Splash 2020 (Nov. 14 - 15, 2020)
Absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion -- an introduction to pharmacokinetics. How pharmaceuticals and other xenobiotics get in, get to where they need to be, and get removed from the body. The first half will cover the basics through examining the behavior and fate of some common cold medications. The second half will reinforce the first by examining the adventures of adverse or unwanted interactions, between medications, the host, and the environment.


S14293: Methylene blue stories of pathology in Splash 2020 (Nov. 14 - 15, 2020)
The basic dye, and redox indicator, Methylene blue will be the central character in a series of tales which will serve to explain several key concepts in human pathology. Antihistamines, antipsychotics malaria, sickle cell disease, viagra, fish tanks, and a variety of seemingly disparate topics of biology will be explained with the help of methylene blue.


S14295: Formaldehyde- stories of pathology in Splash 2020 (Nov. 14 - 15, 2020)
An introduction to pathology's favorite tissue fixative. We will explore the chemistry of formaldehyde molecule and it's role in tissue preservation and embalming, billiard balls, mirror manufacture, moonshine, and a variety of other areas of life.. Then we will circle back to pathology with the discovery of antigen retrieval, and how this opened a new era of immunohistochemistry.


S14296: Stupid Human Tricks in Splash 2020 (Nov. 14 - 15, 2020)
We'll cover some of the more unusual examples of how the human body can be an example of exquisite functional design or completely stupid fail. From here I hope to encourage discussion and question and answer of any bodily myth, mystery, or ailment. Topics such as: Our weak backs, a penchant for atherosclerosis, the valgus knee and why this tells you Bigfoot has to be a guy in a furry suit. etc


S14054: Pathology naturewalk in HSSP Summer 2020 (Jul. 11, 2020)
A crash course in the study of disease. Each class will begin with introducing the pathophysiology of select disease processes and using this to showcase the interactions of the various organ systems. Each class will end with a show-and-tell of sorts connecting the discussed disease with phenomena of the everyday and nature. The overall theme of the course will revolve around the examining of boundaries, in the body and in nature. The place where one thing meets another is where all the interesting stuff happens.


S13444: Methylene blue stories of pathology in Splash 2019 (Nov. 23 - 24, 2019)
The basic dye, and redox indicator, Methylene blue will be the central character is a series of tales which will serve to explain several key concepts in human pathology. Antihistimines, antipsychotics malaria, sickle cell disease, viagra, fish tanks, and a variety of seemingly disparate topics of biology will be explained with the help of methylene blue.


S13445: Formaldehyde- stories of pathology in Splash 2019 (Nov. 23 - 24, 2019)
An introduction to pathology's favorite tissue fixative. We will explore the chemistry of formaldehyde molecule and it's role in tissue preservation and embalming, billiard balls, mirror manufacture, moonshine, and a variety of other areas of life.. Then we will circle back to pathology with the discovery of antigen retrieval, and how this opened a new era of immunohistochemistry.


S13451: ADME stories of p̶a̶t̶h̶o̶l̶o̶g̶y̶ pharmacology in Splash 2019 (Nov. 23 - 24, 2019)
Absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion: An introduction to pharmacokinetics. How pharmaceuticals and other xenobiotics get in, get to where they need to be, and get removed from the body. The first half will cover the basics through examining the behavior and fate of some common cold medications. The second half will reinforce the first by examining the adventures of adverse or unwanted interactions, between medications, the host, and the environment.


S12554: Methylene blue and stories of pathology in Splash 2018 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2018)
The basic dye, and redox indicator, Methylene blue will be the central character is a series of tales which will serve to explain several key concepts in human pathology. Antihistimines, antipsychotics malaria, sickle cell disease, viagra, fish tanks, and a variety of seemingly disparate topics of biology will be explained with the help of methylene blue.


S12557: Stupid Human Tricks in Splash 2018 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2018)
We'll cover some of the more unusual examples of how the human body can be an example of exquisite functional design or completely stupid fail. From here I hope to encourage discussion and question and answer of any bodily myth, mystery, or ailment. Topics such as: Our weak backs, a penchant for atherosclerosis, the valgus knee and why this tells you Bigfoot has to be a guy in a furry suit, etc.


S12561: Formaldehyde- further stories of pathology in Splash 2018 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2018)
An introduction to pathology's favorite tissue fixative. We will explore the chemistry of formaldehyde molecule and it's role in tissue preservation and embalming, billiard balls, mirror manufacture, moonshine, and a variety of other areas of life.. Then we will circle back to pathology with the discovery of antigen retrieval, and how this opened a new era of immunohistochemistry


S11065: Stupid human tricks in Splash 2016 (Nov. 19 - 20, 2016)
We'll cover some of the more unusual examples of how the human body can be an example of exquisite functional design or completely stupid fail. From here I hope to encourage discussion and question & answer of any bodily myth, mystery, or ailment. Topics including:Entoptic images. the Cushing reflex. Why only humans and pugs choke on their dinner. The valgus knee and how Bigfoot has to be a guy in a furry suit. etc


S11074: When cells die OR Why Elizabeth Holmes/ Theranos never had a chance in Splash 2016 (Nov. 19 - 20, 2016)
Will you ever be able to go to the doctor and give just a few drops of blood from a finger prick, for all (most?) of your medical testing needs? Nope, not ever. The problem? We are made of cells and mother nature abhors the idea of mingling the outside with the inside of cells. Everything from ,what cells do when they are in a bad mood, to the frustrating 10 pm activities of lymphatic filariasis will show us why a finger stick will never put venipuncture out of business. A mini-introduction to anatomic and clinical pathology, We will explore the body's various tissues, and fluids through examples of micro-anatomy and describe the changes they undergo as they encounter insult, injury and death. Hopefully your basic biology knowledge will be sharpened to explain many sophisticated phenomena of disease and death, including an explanation of why the Theranos-drop-of-blood testing idea, was a pipe dream before it was even thought of.


S11079: Methylene Blue and Stories of Pathology in Splash 2016 (Nov. 19 - 20, 2016)
The basic dye, and redox indicator, Methylene blue will be the central character in this series of tales which will serve to explain several key concepts in human pathology. Antihistimines, antipsychotics malaria, sickle cell disease, viagra, gram+ bacteria, and a variety of seemingly disparate topics of biology will be tied together and explained with the help of methylene blue.


X10143: Spit Shining Boots & Pocket Mischief in Splash 2015 (Nov. 21 - 22, 2015)
The suede combat boot has led to the demise of shiny shoe knowledge. Come learn to spit shine leather. While coaching students along with creating the perfect mirror shine, I will introduce a few amusing science toys/demonstrations that can be made with stuff you'd find in your pockets or desk. Be prepared to spend most of the class rubbing in circles.


S10144: The Chemistry of Stink in Splash 2015 (Nov. 21 - 22, 2015)
We have been so obsessed with ridding the world of odor that the art of using your nose to investigate science is being lost. By examining the chemistry of some common odious odors and the chemicals used to eradicate them, I hope to give you a more sophisticated understanding of the things in your household cabinets and the esoteric experience of judging a chemical's or microbe's identity by smell alone.


S10149: Methylene Blue and Stories of Pathology in Splash 2015 (Nov. 21 - 22, 2015)
The basic dye, and redox indicator, Methylene blue will be the central character is a series of tales which will serve to explain several key concepts in human pathology. Antihistimines, antipsychotics malaria, sickle cell disease, viagra, gram+ bacteria, and a variety of seemingly disparate topics of biology will be explained with the help of methylene blue. If time allows, the biology of aging will be tied in too.


S9092: Stupid Human Tricks in Splash 2014 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2014)
Stupid human tricks We'll cover some of the more unusual examples of how the human body can be an example of exquisite functional design or completely stupid fail. From here I hope to encourage discussion and question and answer of any bodily myth, mystery, or ailment. Stomach growling. Entoptic images. Knuckle cracking. The valgus knee and how Bigfoot has to be a guy in a furry suit.


X9093: Spit shining boots & pocket mischief in Splash 2014 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2014)
The suede combat boot has led to the demise of shiny shoe knowledge. Come learn to spit shine leather. While couching students along with creating the perfect mirror shine I will introduce a few amusing science toys/demonstrations that can be made with stuff you'd find in your pockets or desk. Be prepared to spend most of the class rubbing in circles.


S9094: When Cells Die in Splash 2014 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2014)
A mini-introduction to pathology, the study of disease. We will explore the body’s various tissues through examples of micro-anatomy and describe the changes they undergo as they encounter insult, injury and death. Hopefully your basic biology knowledge will be sharpened to explain many sophisticated phenomena of disease and death.


S9095: When Organs Die in Splash 2014 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2014)
Meant to be an extension of When Cells Die, but may be taken on its own. Here, we will explore various common themes in organ failure, and how it ultimately leads to the demise of the of the individual, if no intervention is taken. The overall theme will try to argue that your immune system is not necessarily your best friend.


S7986: When cells die in Splash! 2013 (Nov. 23 - 24, 2013)
A mini-introduction to pathology, the study of disease. We will explore the body’s various tissues through examples of micro-anatomy and describe the changes they undergo as they encounter insult, injury and death. Hopefully your basic biology knowledge will be sharpened to explain many sophisticated phenomena of disease and death.


S7989: The chemistry and biology of stinkiness in Splash! 2013 (Nov. 23 - 24, 2013)
We have been so obsessed with ridding the world of odor that the art of using your nose to investigate science is being lost. By examining the chemistry of some common odious odors and the chemicals used to eradicate them I hope to give students a more sophisticated understanding of whats in your household cabinets and the esoteric experience of judging a chemical's or microbe's identity by smell alone.


S8007: Stupid human tricks and why the zombie apocalypse won’t happen in Splash! 2013 (Nov. 23 - 24, 2013)
We’ll cover some of the more unusual examples of how the human body can be an example of exquisite functional design or completely stupid fail. From here I hope to encourage discussion and question and answer of any bodily myth, mystery, or ailment. Stomach growling. Entoptic images. Knuckle cracking. The valgus knee and how Bigfoot has to be a guy in a furry suit. Some time will be spent bashing the biological absurdity of a zombie pandemic.


S6689: When Cells Die. in Splash! 2012 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2012)
A mini-introduction to pathology, the study of disease. We will explore the body’s various tissues through examples of micro-anatomy and describe the changes they undergo as they encounter insult, injury and death. Hopefully your basic biology knowledge will be sharpened to explain many sophisticated phenomena of disease and death. .


S6694: Stupid human tricks and why the zombie apocalypse won't happen in Splash! 2012 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2012)
We'll cover some of the more unusual examples of how the human body can be an example of exquisite functional design or completely stupid fail. From here I hope to encourage discussion and question and answer of any bodily myth, mystery, or ailment. Stomach growling. Entoptic images. Knuckle cracking. The valgus knee and how Bigfoot has to be a guy in a furry suit. AND the biology behind why the zombie apocalypse can't happen


X6698: Spit shining boots & pocket mischief in Splash! 2012 (Nov. 17 - 18, 2012)
The suede combat boot has led to the demise of shiny shoe knowledge. Come learn to spit shine leather. While coaching students along with creating the perfect mirror shine I will introduce a few amusing science toys/demonstrations that can be made with stuff you'd find in your pockets or desk. Be prepared to spend most of the class rubbing in circles.


S4158: When Cells Die. in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
A mini-introduction to pathology, the study of disease. We will explore the body’s various tissues through examples of micro-anatomy and describe the changes they undergo as they encounter insult, injury and death. Hopefully your basic biology knowledge will be sharpened to explain many sophisticated phenomena of disease and death.


S4159: Chemistry of Stink in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
We have been so obsessed with ridding the world of odor that the art of using your nose to investigate science is being lost. By examining the chemistry of some common odious odors and the chemicals used to eradicate them, I hope to give students a more sophisticated understanding of what’s in your household cabinets and the esoteric experience of judging a chemical’s composition by smell alone.


S4163: Stupid human tricks in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
We'll cover some of the more unusual examples of how the human body can be an example of exquisite functional design or completely stupid fail. From here I hope to encourage discussion and question & answer of any bodily myth, mystery, or ailment. Stomach growling. Entoptic images. Knuckle cracking. The valgus knee and how Bigfoot has to be a guy in a furry suit. Maple Syrup Urine Disease...


X4164: Spit shining boots & pocket mischief in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
The suede combat boot has led to the demise of shiny shoe knowledge. Come learn to spit shine leather. While couching students along with creating the perfect mirror shine I will introduce a few amusing science toys/demonstrations that can be made with stuff you'd find in your pockets or desk.


S2776: Chemistry of Stink in Splash! 2009 (Nov. 21 - 22, 2009)
We have been so obsessed with ridding the world of odor that the art of using your nose to investigate science is being lost. By examining the chemistry of some common odious odors and the chemicals used to eradicate them, I hope to give students a more sophisticated understanding of what's in your household cabinets and the esoteric experience of judging a chemical's composition by smell alone.


S2777: When cells die in Splash! 2009 (Nov. 21 - 22, 2009)
A mini-introduction to pathology, the study of disease. We will explore the body’s various tissues through examples of micro-anatomy and describe the changes they undergo as they encounter insult, injury and death. Hopefully your basic biology knowledge will be sharpened to explain many sophisticated phenomena of disease and death.


S2778: When Organs die in Splash! 2009 (Nov. 21 - 22, 2009)
A continuation of “When cells Die” but may be taken on its own. This shall expand on the physical and visual (microscopic) changes described in “When cells Die” by examining the broader changes in whole organ systems when they are altered by various disease processes.


S1937: When cells die in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
A mini-introduction to pathology, the study of disease. We will explore the body's various tissues through examples of micro-anatomy and describe the changes they undergo as they encounter insult, injury and death. Hopefully your basic biology knowledge will be sharpened to explain many sophisticated phenomena of disease and death.


S1940: When cells are murdered in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
A continuation of "When cells Die" but may be taken on its own. We shall explore various specific mechanisms of cell death, focusing mostly on chemical toxins/chemotherapy. This shall expand on the physical and visual (microscopic) changes described in "When cells Die" and round out my attempt to introduce the student to pathology.


S1941: Chemistry of Stink in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
We have been so obsessed with ridding the world of odor that the art of using your nose to investigate science is being lost. By examining the chemistry of some common odious odors and the chemicals used to eradicate them I hope to give students a more sophisticated understanding of whats in your household cabinets and the esoteric experience of judging a chemicals composition by smell alone.


When cells are murdered in SPLASH (2005)
A continuation of "When cells Die" but may be taken on its own. We shall explore various specific mechanisms of ...


When cells die in SPLASH (2005)
A mini-introduction to pathology, the study of disease. We will explore the bodies various tissues through examples of micro-anatomy and ...


mischief in your pockets in SPLASH (2003)
Repeat of S-126.


mischief in your pockets in SPLASH (2003)
Through a series of chemical and physics demonstrations, gags and tricks made from what few things one can find laying ...


Forensic Medicine I in SPLASH (2000)
A brief introduction into the realm of pathology used to solve crimes. We will cover the methods of determining time ...


Forensic Medicine I in SPLASH (2000)
Repetition of S-069. See above for details.


Chemistry Naturewalk in HSSP (1999)
Sour candies may be used to prevent soap scum or the clotting of banked blood. From this starting place we ...