The Effects of the Beta 2-agonist Drug Clenbuterol on Taurine Levels in Heart and Other Tissues in the Rat

Amino Acids. 1998;15(1-2):13-25. doi: 10.1007/BF01345277.


The administration of a single subcutaneous dose of clenbuterol to rats altered the level of taurine in certain tissues. Taurine levels in cardiac tissue were significantly decreased 3 h after the administration of 250 micrograms/kg of clenbuterol and remained significantly depressed at 12 h post-dose only returning to control values by 24 h. The level of taurine in the liver increased 3 h after clenbuterol administration but was lower than the control value at 24 h post dose. Lung taurine levels were significantly lower than the control value at 12 hr post dose and remained depressed until 24 h post dose. Clenbuterol caused a significant increase in taurine levels in serum and muscle at 3 and 6 hr postdosing respectively but not at other time points. Serum creatine kinase (CK), activity was slightly but significantly raised at the 12 and 24 h time point. The effects of clenbuterol on tissue taurine content were not dose-dependent over the range studied (63-500 micrograms/kg). However taurine levels in the lung were significantly reduced at all doses and in the heart were significantly lower in the treated groups at all except the lowest dose, 12 h post dosing. Liver taurine levels were significantly increased at the highest dose of 500 micrograms/kg. The reduction of taurine concentrations in the heart, caused by clenbuterol, is of concern as taurine has been shown to have protective properties in many tissues especially the heart.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adrenergic beta-Agonists / adverse effects
  • Adrenergic beta-Agonists / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Cholesterol / blood
  • Clenbuterol / adverse effects
  • Clenbuterol / pharmacology*
  • Creatine Kinase / blood
  • Creatinine / blood
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Heart / drug effects*
  • Liver / chemistry
  • Liver / drug effects
  • Lung / chemistry
  • Lung / drug effects
  • Myocardium / chemistry
  • Myocardium / pathology
  • Organ Size
  • Rats
  • Receptors, Adrenergic, beta-2 / drug effects*
  • Taurine / analysis*
  • Triglycerides / blood
  • Urea / blood


  • Adrenergic beta-Agonists
  • Receptors, Adrenergic, beta-2
  • Triglycerides
  • Taurine
  • Urea
  • Cholesterol
  • Creatinine
  • Creatine Kinase
  • Clenbuterol