Sharon Tooze is a senior group leader at the Crick who has made significant contributions to the Autophagy field.
Tooze has a long-standing interest in molecular cell biology, starting with her PhD work at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany. At EMBL she studied transport of a viral glycoprotein from a SARS virus and showed that O-linked glycosylation starts in the ER-Golgi intermediate compartment. After this, she became interested in organelle biogenesis and in how immature secretory granules form from the trans-Golgi network in neuroendocrine cells.
Tooze maintained her interest in the biogenesis of secretory granules when she moved to the Imperial Cancer Research Fund, later the Cancer Research UK London Research Institute (and now part of the Francis Crick Institute) and in 2006 developed her interest in autophagy and the biogenesis of autophagosomes. Her Molecular Cell Biology of Autophagy lab has identified several mammalian Atg proteins and continues to contribute to understanding of autophagy at the molecular cell biology level.
In 2010, Tooze was awarded EMBO membership and in 2018 she became an elected member of the Academy of Medical Sciences.