Effect of Creatine on Rat Sciatic Nerve Injury: A Comparative Ultrastructural Study

Turk Neurosurg. 2018;28(1):128-136. doi: 10.5137/1019-5149.JTN.18806-16.0.


Aim: Creatine is an endogenous molecule synthesized in the liver, kidney and pancreas from glycine and arginine and is important for mitochondrial metabolism. It is widely used as a supplement for improving muscle mass and function for many years. As it is expected to prevent apoptosis and diminish oxidative stress, it is also studied in a number of neurodegenerative diseases for its beneficial effect in recent years. We studied the effect of creatine on the peripheral nerve injury in an experimental rat crush injury model to obtain ultrastructural evidence.

Material and methods: Animals were randomly divided into 3 groups having 5 animals in each group. Group 1 was the control group, Group 2 the trauma group and Group 3 the trauma+creatine group. The first group served as sham control. In group 2 and group 3, sciatic nerves of the rats received crush injury using aneurysm clips. In group 3, daily 2 g/kg creatine monohydrate was administered via gavage after the trauma. Nerve samples were obtained at the 28th day after trauma for light and electron microscopic evaluation.

Results: Our comparative analysis results suggest a possible positive effect of creatine supplement on peripheral nerve regeneration as statistical analysis revealed significant differences between group 2 and group 3. Though our finding does not represent a miracle of regenerative support, beneficial usage of creatine is documented in the present study.

Conclusion: Creatine supplement helps to diminish the harmful effects of peripheral nerve crush injury which is also supported by electron microscopy findings.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Creatine / pharmacology
  • Creatine / therapeutic use*
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Male
  • Nerve Crush
  • Nerve Regeneration / drug effects
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Recovery of Function / drug effects
  • Recovery of Function / physiology
  • Sciatic Nerve / drug effects
  • Sciatic Nerve / injuries
  • Sciatic Nerve / ultrastructure*
  • Sciatic Neuropathy / drug therapy*
  • Sciatic Neuropathy / pathology*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Creatine