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The Role of Taurine in Infant Nutrition

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Taurine 3

Abstract

Beginning in 1981 and continuing throughout the 1990’s, the organic compound taurine has been added to infant formulas and total parenteral nutrition (TPN) solutions in countries around the world. This process of taurine supplementation was based upon the findings of studies first begun in Scandinavia in the late 1970’s23,61,64,70 as well as on studies in cats36 and primates72. Although by 1984 the US Food and Drug Administration was convinced to permit the addition of taurine to purified infant formulas, many studies since have supported this decision. This review will examine the evidence that supports the addition of taurine to formulas as well as to TPN solutions, much of it fairly recent and, clearly, in the post-marketing phase of the FDA decision. In accordance with the admonitions of Alexander Pope’s famous couplet from his Essay on Man quoted above, this review will focus upon studies performed in humans. While animal studies are always critical in terms of a deeper understanding of the role of taurine, the final value of any biomedical research should be understood in terms of improvements in human health.

“Know thyself’; Do not upon God presume to scan”. The proper study of mankind is man”.

Alexander Pope 1688–1744

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Chesney, R.W., Helms, R.A., Christensen, M., Budreau, A.M., Han, X., Sturman, J.A. (1998). The Role of Taurine in Infant Nutrition. In: Schaffer, S., Lombardini, J.B., Huxtable, R.J. (eds) Taurine 3. Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology, vol 442. Springer, Boston, MA. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4899-0117-0_56

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