UNDERSTANDING & CONTROLLING BASAL SODIUM FLUX ACROSS MEMBRANES Why: The ability to regulate the flux of sodium ions across membranes is crucial for life in mammals. However, the function and pharmacology of the ion channel involved in this process remain elusive. How: Using an innovative chemical-biology approach using incorporation of synthetic amino acids, this project will – for the first time – provide insight into the molecular function of this ion channel. What: The majority of currently-marketed drugs target membrane proteins, such as ion channels. This project will therefore address a major challenge in developing novel drugs targeting proteins crucial for life in humans.