Taurine week #4: Muscles

Two 2022 papers investigated taurine and skeletal muscles, starting with a rodent study of endurance exercise:

“This study examined effects of taurine on dynamics of blood glucose concentration (BGC) during endurance exercise in rats.

  • Blood was collected every 10 min from the jugular vein via cannulation.
  • Exercise period was divided by every 40 min into four phases.
  • Individual exhaustion time is indicated by arrows (white: CON group [n = 12], black: TAU group [n = 10]) under the X-axis.
  • 120-min point is the approximate median where there were significant differences in BGC between groups at exercise point every 10 min (80–150 min).
  • †P < 0.05 and #P < 0.05 show significant difference to respective starting points (0 min) in TAU and CON groups.
  • Arrow with two heads (↔) shows a significant difference at P < 0.05 between groups at each point.

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Observation of BCG confirmed that taurine supplementation delayed the decline in once-elevated BGC during endurance exercise.

Significantly higher levels of free fatty acid in plasma as well as acetyl-carnitine and N-acetyltaurine in skeletal muscle at the 120-min point suggested that taurine supplementation shifted the priority of energy substrate utilization in skeletal muscles to fatty acid oxidation during endurance exercise. Consequent sparing effect of taurine on BGC might contribute to enhancing exercise performance.”

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00726-021-03110-8 “Taurine supplementation enhances endurance capacity by delaying blood glucose decline during prolonged exercise in rats”


A second rodent study focused on injured muscle:

“We evaluated whether taurine administration in old mice counteracts physiopathological effects of aging in skeletal muscle.

Type I slow-twitch oxidative fibers (expressing the slow isoform of the myosin heavy chain, slow MHC) are more resistant to damage and a variety of atrophic conditions than type IIb fast-twitch glycolytic fibers. In several muscle pathologies, including sarcopenia, the fastest muscle phenotype is more severely compromised when compared with slow-twitch muscles.

  • Tibialis anterior (TA) muscles of old mice expressed very low levels of slow-MHC isoform compared to young muscles. Slow-MHC expression increased in muscles of taurine-treated mice.
  • Analysis of the fast-MHC isoform revealed that, in the presence of taurine, its expression was significantly upregulated compared to what was observed in TA muscles of old mice that did not receive taurine.

These results suggest that the positive effect of taurine on skeletal muscle homeostasis of aged mice may be mediated by stimulation of the PGC1-α/MEF2C pathway, favoring a possible metabolic shift of myofibers towards the oxidative phenotype, and preserving more susceptible glycolytic fibers.

taurine twitch

In injured muscle, taurine enhances the regenerative process by downregulating inflammatory response and preserving muscle fiber integrity. Taurine attenuates ROS production in aged muscles by maintaining a proper cellular redox balance, acting as an antioxidant molecule.

These data demonstrate that taurine administration ameliorates the microenvironment, allowing an efficient regenerative process, and attenuation of catabolic pathways related to onset of sarcopenia.”

https://www.mdpi.com/2076-3921/11/5/1016/htm “Taurine Administration Counteracts Aging-Associated Impingement of Skeletal Muscle Regeneration by Reducing Inflammation and Oxidative Stress”

A human equivalent to each daily mouse taurine dose administered over five weeks was (.081 x 100 mg) x 70 kg = .567 g.


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