What is Carnosine? High and low values | Lab results explained

Carnosine is a dietary peptide related marker that consists of histidine and beta-alanine. Carnosine is an incompletely digested peptide that is derived primarily from beef and pork.

Higher levels:

Higher levels can be due to deficiency of enzyme carnosinase or its cofactor, zinc. This analyte is a ß-alanyl dipeptide of histidine.

– Inherited carnosinase enzyme deficits lead to neurological development problems and sensory polyneuropathy.

– Breakdown of Carnosine requires a zinc dependent peptidase, which can be inhibited by high levels of the ”end product” beta-alanine. Zinc status should be checked (RBC Elements) since the peptidase activity is zinc dependent. The peptidase activity can also be inhibited by high levels of Beta-alanine, which can result from B-6 insufficiency, or abnormal intestinal flora.

– Beta-alanine can accumulate if deamination of beta-alanine to alpha-ketoglutarate is impaired due to B-6 insufficiency. Therefore, carnosine can accumulate as a result of high intake of carnosine containing meats (beef, pork, tuna and salmon) with insufficient zinc and/or B-6 availability.

– Beta-alanine can also be elevated as a product of gastrointestinal bacterial conversion of aspartate and/or breakdown of pyrimidines that are high in yeast. Thus beta-alanine can accumulate and inhibit hydrolysis of carnosine as a result of significant dysbiosis, or deficiencies of B-6 and/or zinc.


The information on is NOT intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: