Effects of taurine on the reactivity of aortas from diabetic rats

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29 Scopus citations


The effects of the semi-essential amino acid-like nutrient, taurine, on alterations in the reactivities of aortas from male rats with chronic streptozotocin-induced diabetes were examined under in vitro conditions. In the absence of taurine, the contractile responsiveness of endothelium-denuded aortic rings from diabetic rats to norepinephrine, but not KCl, was enhanced compared to controls. This effect of norepinephrine on the diabetic rat aorta appeared to be associated with increased release of intracellular calcium, influx of extracellular calcium and protein kinase C-mediated responses. Incubation of endothelium-denuded aortic rings with 10 mM, but not 5 mM, taurine for 2 h reduced the augmented contractile responses of the tissues from diabetic rats to norepinephrine close to control levels, and this was associated with inhibition of responses linked to the release and influx of calcium, and protein kinase C activation. Endothelium-dependent relaxation of aortas from diabetic rats to acetylcholine was depressed relative to controls. This effect of diabetes was ameliorated close to control levels by incubating the tissues with 10 mM, but not 5 mM, taurine for 2 h. Incubation of nondiabetic rat aortic rings with 45 mM glucose for 3 h caused enhancement of contraction of the vascular smooth muscle to phenylephrine and impairment of endothelium-mediated vasorelaxation to acetylcholine, as compared to control responses. Co-incubation of the tissues with 5-10 mM taurine concentration-dependently reduced the alterations in both contractile and relaxant responses caused by high glucose. Overall, the data suggest that taurine ameliorates or prevents vascular reactivity alterations in diabetes. Such an observation provides preliminary evidence for taurine's potential as a therapeutic agent for the prevention or amelioration of vascular disorders in diabetes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)279-289
Number of pages11
JournalLife sciences
Issue number5-6
StatePublished - Jan 30 2008


  • Aorta
  • Diabetic rat
  • Strepotozoticin
  • Taurine
  • Vascular reactivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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