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October 2022

J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1983 ; 2 Suppl 1(): S266-71.

Taurine in human milk: growth modulator or conditionally essential amino acid?

Gaull GE.

Deficiency of this ubiquitous and abundant small molecule, which is not metabolized under ordinary circumstances, can cause retinal damage not only in the cat but also in the monkey and in man. Its deficiency also is capable of producing growth retardation in the monkey. It seems prudent, therefore, to examine this problem further in order better to understand the role of such growth modulators in infant nutrition. This may be especially so in countries such as India where the vegetarian diet, one which is low in taurine because of the relatively small amounts of taurine in most plants (7), might prove of particular importance.

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