The effect of creatine supplementation on mass and performance of rat skeletal muscle

Life Sci. 2007 Aug 9;81(9):710-6. doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2007.06.029. Epub 2007 Jul 18.


This study investigated the effect of dietary creatine supplementation on hypertrophy and performance of rat skeletal muscle. Male Sprague-Dawley rats underwent either tibialis anterior ablation or partial ablation of the plantaris/gastrocnemius to induce compensatory hypertrophy of the extensor digitorum longus (EDL) or soleus respectively, or sham surgery. Creatine (300 mg/kg) was administered to one half of each group for 5 weeks, after which force production was measured. With the leg fixed at the knee and ankle, the distal tendon of the EDL or soleus was attached to a force transducer and the muscle was electrically stimulated via the sciatic nerve. Synergist ablation resulted in a significant increase in EDL mass and in soleus mass relative to control muscles. However, no effect of creatine supplementation on muscle mass or performance was found between control and either group of creatine-treated rats. Despite an apparent increase in muscle creatine content, creatine supplementation did not augment muscle hypertrophy or force production in rat EDL or soleus muscle, providing evidence that the potential benefits of creatine supplementation are not due to a direct effect on muscle but rather to an enhanced ability to train.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Creatine / administration & dosage
  • Creatine / pharmacology*
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Hypertrophy
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength / drug effects*
  • Muscle Tonus / drug effects
  • Muscle, Skeletal / drug effects*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / pathology
  • Organ Size
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley


  • Creatine