Improvement of impaired memory in mice by taurine

Neural Plast. 2000;7(4):245-59. doi: 10.1155/NP.2000.245.


Taurine was extracted from Pegasus laternarius Cuvier to study its effects on learning and memory in mice. Mice were treated with different doses of taurine (10 mg/kg, 20 mg/kg, 40 mg/kg). The mice were treated with various chemical agents (pentobarbital, cycloheximide, sodium nitrite, alcohol) to disrupt the normal memory process. We measured the effect of taurine on step-down latency (SDL) and escape latency (EL) in a passive avoidance task after 10 or 30 days. Treatment with taurine alone did not change either SDL or EL. Taurine protected mice from the memory disruption induced by alcohol, pentobarbital, sodium nitrite, and cycloheximide but had no obvious effect on motor coordination, exploratory activity, or locomotor activity as measured using the rota-rod test and the hole board test. We conclude that taurine can be effective in attenuating the amnesia produced by alcohol, pentobarbital, cycloheximide, and sodium nitrite without compromising the behavioral aspects of the animals tested.

MeSH terms

  • Amnesia / chemically induced
  • Amnesia / physiopathology
  • Amnesia / prevention & control*
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Avoidance Learning / drug effects
  • Avoidance Learning / physiology*
  • China
  • Cycloheximide / pharmacology
  • Ethanol / pharmacology
  • Medicine, Chinese Traditional
  • Memory / drug effects
  • Memory / physiology*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Motor Activity / drug effects
  • Motor Activity / physiology
  • Pentobarbital
  • Plants, Medicinal / chemistry
  • Psychomotor Performance / drug effects*
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology
  • Sodium Nitrite
  • Taurine / isolation & purification
  • Taurine / pharmacology*


  • Taurine
  • Ethanol
  • Cycloheximide
  • Pentobarbital
  • Sodium Nitrite