Taurine and its neuroprotective role

Adv Exp Med Biol. 2013;775:19-27. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4614-6130-2_2.


Taurine plays multiple roles in the CNS including acting as a -neuro-modulator, an osmoregulator, a regulator of cytoplasmic calcium levels, a trophic factor in development, and a neuroprotectant. In neurons taurine has been shown to prevent mitochondrial dysfunction and to protect against endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress associated with neurological disorders. In cortical neurons in culture taurine protects against excitotoxicity through reversing an increase in levels of key ER signaling components including eIF-2-alpha and cleaved ATF6. The role of communication between the ER and mitochondrion is also important and examples are presented of protection by taurine against ER stress together with prevention of subsequent mitochondrial initiated apoptosis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Mitochondria / drug effects
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Mitochondria / pathology
  • Nervous System Diseases / drug therapy
  • Nervous System Diseases / pathology
  • Neuroprotective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Neuroprotective Agents / therapeutic use
  • Receptors, Neurotransmitter / metabolism
  • Taurine / pharmacology*
  • Taurine / therapeutic use


  • Neuroprotective Agents
  • Receptors, Neurotransmitter
  • taurine receptor
  • Taurine