Simon Wilkinson

Senior Research Fellow - Autophagy and Cancer


Simon Wilkinson studied at University of Edinburgh from 1996, gaining a 1st class degree in Biochemistry. In late 2000, he moved to the Institute of Cancer Research in London, to study for his doctorate in the Cancer Research UK Tumour Cell Signalling Unit, under the supervision of Prof. Chris Marshall. His work here investigated the different signalling requirements of diverse tumour cell types for motility and invasion. In the course of this work he became very interested in the different mechanisms by which tumour cells engage protein kinase signalling pathways.

In 2005, Simon joined the Beatson Institute for Cancer Research as a postdoctoral scientist. Here, working with Prof. Kevin Ryan, he became interested in autophagy in cancer and worked on the identification of an ‘autophagy kinome’ - a set of protein kinases that engaged various different forms of autophagy. In 2010, Simon moved to Edinburgh to work with Prof. Margaret Frame looking at the interplay between autophagy and cell signalling, focussing on Src kinase. In 2012, he was awarded a prestigious Career Development Fellowship from Cancer Research UK in order to establish his own laboratory in Edinburgh. His lab now studies the interplay between intracellular membrane dynamics - particularly membrane modification by ubiquitin-like proteins and the autophagy pathway - and cell signalling during cancer development and treatment, focussing on processes such as control of gene expression, cellular dedifferentiation and therapy-induced senescence.

Undergraduate teaching

BSc(Hons) Biomedical Science:  Year 4 BIME10030 Cancer Biology and Medicine Elective

Postgraduate teaching

MSc Biomedical Science: Cancer Biology

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


Current PhD students supervised

Roland Aldridge

Asimina Pantazi

Past PhD students supervised

Alice Newman

Nurun Fancy

Current project grants

CRUK Career Development Fellow (award C20685/A12825), " TBK1 kinase addiction in KRAS-dependent non-small cell lung cancer: the role of autophagy", Feb 2012-Dec 2018, £1,152,735
BBSRC project grant (“Bb/N000315/1”), "A new negative regulator of autophagy in cellular and organismal homeostasis", Jan 2016-Dec 2018, £488,176

View all 32 publications on Research Explorer