Cellular bioenergetics of guanidinoacetic acid: the role of mitochondria

J Bioenerg Biomembr. 2015 Oct;47(5):369-72. doi: 10.1007/s10863-015-9619-7. Epub 2015 Aug 9.


Guanidinoacetic acid (GAA) is a natural precursor of creatine, and a possible substrate for the creatine kinase (CK) enzyme system, serving as a creatine mimetic. Its direct role in cellular bioenergetics has been confirmed in several studies, however GAA utilization by CK seems to be a second-rate as compared to creatine, and compartment-dependent. Here we discuss various factors that might affect GAA use in high-energy phosphoryl transfer in the cytosol and mitochondria.

Keywords: Bioenergetics; Creatine; Creatine kinase; Guanidinoacetic acid; Mitochondria.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Transport, Active / physiology
  • Creatine / metabolism*
  • Creatine Kinase / metabolism*
  • Cytosol / metabolism*
  • Energy Metabolism / physiology*
  • Glycine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Glycine / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Mitochondria / metabolism*


  • Creatine Kinase
  • glycocyamine
  • Creatine
  • Glycine