Taurine Research Proposal:
Taurine (2-aminoethanesulfonic acid) acidic chemical substance found in the tissues of animals, especially sea creatures amine with a sulfonic acid functional group, but not one of the 20 amino acids taurine synthesis- in liver via cysteine sulfinic acid pathway:
cysteine-->oxidized to cystein sulfinic acid-->hypotaurine-->taurine
How Taurine Works To Get Rid Of Fat: The liver makes bile acids that emulsify and absorb lipids. For bile acids to be solubilized at physiological pH, they must be conjugated through peptide linkages with glycine or taurine (more commonly refered to as bile salts) Bile salts lower surface tension and form micelles because of their lipophilic and hydrophilic components. Taurine conjugation of bile acids has a significant effect on the solubility of choloesterol.
"Therapeutic Applications of Taurine" -Timothy C. Birdsall http://www.thorne.com/altmedrev/fulltext/taurine3-2.html
Taurine is detected in biological tissues by (33)s NMR spectroscopy (maybe we can run this experiment in the tissues of various races/ages/genders of humans to determine who has the most taurine) (or we could test people after they've eaten various kinds of foods- first a general test of meat, fish, or vegetables, then maybe various kinds of fish and seafood to see which increases taurine levels the most)
Microassay methods for taurine cation exchange resin to separate taurine from other fluorescamine reactive substances "The "taurine fraction" in this column chromatographic procedure was collected and fluorescence development was carried out. The maximal sensitivity obtained for taurine was 25 pmoles. The specificity, reproducibility, sensitivity and recovery for taurine obtained by this method were satisfactory enough to be used for biological applications."
(this one didn't have a full article though... so maybe we could set up a cation exchange resin on our own)
Fluorometric assay method of taurine: high voltage paper electrophoresis subsequent to column chromatographic procedures fluorescamine and borate buffer were sprayed on the paper, and fluorescence was assayed spectro-fluorometrically after eluting with 50% ethanol. need a concentration of .5-10 nmoles of taurine. There are examples of tissue levels of taurine in various organs of the rat as determined by this new assay.
characterize a pathway
biochemical assay for activity