What Is Taurine Made Of?

taurine-made Credit: Eddie~S/CC-BY-SA 2.0

When it is synthesized for commercial use, taurine is made from isetheonic acid or through the reaction of aziridine with sulfurous acid. Taurine occurs naturally in the human body, and it is found in meat and fish as well. The molecular formula of taurine is C2H7NO3S.

Taurine is considered to be a conditional amino acid; it is not a true amino acid because it lacks a carboxyl group. Taurine is necessary for the development and function of many parts of the human body, including musculature, the cardiovascular system and the central nervous system, among others. People whose bodies cannot manufacture taurine must get it from their food or from supplements. There is some evidence that athletic performance is improved by taking taurine supplements and that mental performance is improved with a combination of taurine and caffeine.

Taurine contains a sulfonate group. In 1993, approximately 5,000 to 6,000 tons of taurine were produced for commercial purposes; half was used for pet food manufacture and the other half for pharmaceutical applications.