L-Carnosine (or simply carnosine) is a combination of two amino acids, alanine and histidine and as such is classified as a dipeptide. Carnosine is concentrated within muscle tissue and plays a key role in supporting muscle hydrogen buffering. Supplementation may be of particular importance for vegetarians as certain meats are rich in carnosine.
Carnosine possesses antioxidant properties and has been shown to protect against the peroxidation of cell membranes when oxidative stress is present.
L-Carnosine has also been shown to be a chelator of divalant metal ions within the body. Further benefits are currently being researched including liver protection from alcohol abuse, Parkinson's disease and macular protection.