Taurine deficiency syndrome in cats

Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 1989 May;19(3):403-13. doi: 10.1016/s0195-5616(89)50052-4.


Taurine deficiency occurs in a large number of cats fed unfortified commercial diets. Deficiency arises because cats are unable to absorb all the taurine in processed diets and/or are unable to synthesize the deficit between absorption and requirement, which makes taurine an essential amino acid for cats. Taurine-depleted cats develop retinal degeneration, cardiomyopathy, altered white-cell function, and abnormal growth and development. Taurine deficiency is best estimated from the plasma-taurine concentration, with values less than 30 mumol/l considered deficient.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cat Diseases / etiology*
  • Cats
  • Syndrome / veterinary
  • Taurine / deficiency*


  • Taurine