Taurine Supplementation Shows Potential for Enhancing Health and Longevity

Taurine Supplementation Shows Potential for Enhancing Health and Longevity

June 14, 2023

A new study published in the journal Science has uncovered compelling evidence suggesting that taurine, a nutrient found in meat, fish, and commonly sold as a supplement may contribute to improved health and increased longevity. Taurine, an amino acid with unique chemical properties, is structurally different from the amino acids found in proteins and is present in relatively low quantities in most plants.

Led by a team of researchers, the study sheds light on the role of taurine in maintaining health, particularly during the aging process. They showed male mice lived 10% longer, and females 12%, and both appeared to be in better health. The team led by Singh et al. discovered that circulating taurine levels decline by approximately 80% over the human lifespan. Moreover, the study demonstrated that mice lacking a major taurine transporter exhibited shorter lifespans.

The study further revealed that supplementing taurine from middle age resulted in a remarkable increase in the median lifespan in nematode worms and mice. The taurine-treated mice showed improvements in strength, coordination, memory, and a reduction in multiple aging markers such as cellular senescence, mitochondrial and DNA damage, and chronic inflammation. Additionally, taurine supplementation in middle-aged rhesus macaques positively affected bone health, metabolic phenotypes, and immunological profiles.

The precise mechanisms through which taurine enhances health and longevity are not yet fully understood. Potential explanations include the accumulation of antioxidant and signaling metabolites, alterations in nutrient absorption, and increased translational fidelity within mitochondria. Taurine is also known to interact with certain neurotransmitter receptors, such as γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) and glycine receptors, suggesting possible effects on neurotransmission.

The study also highlighted the decline in taurine synthesis capacity during aging, which partly contributes to taurine deficiency. While decreased calorie intake or changing food preferences may be factors, the study indicates that endogenous synthesis in tissues other than the liver may play a greater role in humans.

Although taurine is already present in tissues at millimolar concentrations and is widely used in baby formula and energy drinks, large-scale, long-term safety trials are lacking. Additionally, the study emphasized the need for caution in dietary choices, as a focus solely on taurine may neglect the benefits of plant-rich diets associated with human health and longevity.

The findings of this study offer promising insights into the potential of taurine supplementation in promoting health and extending lifespan. Further research and controlled studies will be crucial to validate these initial findings and better understand the underlying mechanisms.


Parminder Singh et al. , Taurine deficiency as a driver of aging.Science380,eabn9257(2023).DOI:10.1126/science.abn9257