Oral taurine treatment has been studied extensively as a hypotensive agent. Several rat models of hypertension have been used to prove that dietary taurine supplementation can alleviate high blood pressure, among other cardiovascular problems. Experimental models mentioned in this review are the spontaneously hypertensive rat, the DOCA-salt rat, the Dahl-S rat, the renovascular hypertensive rat, the hyperinsulinemic rat and the ethanol-treated rat. The beneficial effects of taurine were also demonstrated in studies involving human subjects suffering essential hypertension. Taurine supplementation of 6 g/day for as little as 7 days resulted in measurable decreases in blood pressure in these patients. In both rat and human studies, the effects of taurine appeared to be dependent on the modulation of an overactive sympathetic system. However, taurine has positive effects on other types of cardiovascular problems and thus may act through more than one mechanism.