Creatine Monohydrate Increases Bone Mineral Density in Young Sprague-Dawley Rats

ANTOLIC, ANAMARIA1; ROY, BRIAN D.2; TARNOPOLSKY, MARK A.1; ZERNICKE, RONALD F.3; WOHL, GREGORY R.3; SHAUGHNESSY, STEPHEN G.4; BOURGEOIS, JACQUELINE M.4

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise:
doi: 10.1249/mss.0b013e318031fac4
BASIC SCIENCES: Original Investigations
Abstract

Introduction: Creatine kinase, found in osteoblasts, is an enzyme that is upregulated in response to interventions that enhance bone mass accretion. Creatine monohydrate supplementation can increase fat-free mass in young healthy men and women and can reduce markers of bone breakdown in boys with Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

Purpose: The objective of this study was to determine the influence of supplementation with creatine monohydrate on bone structure and function in growing rats, to establish a therapeutic model.

Materials and Methods: Creatine monohydrate (2% w.w.) (CR; N = 16) or standard rat chow (CON; N = 16) was fed to Sprague-Dawley rats beginning at 5 wk of age, for 8 wk. Bone mineral density (BMD) and content (BMC) were assessed using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry at the beginning and end of the protocol. The rats were sacrificed, and one femur was removed for the determination of mechanical properties.

Results: The CR-treated rats showed greater lumbar BMD and femoral bending load at failure compared with the CON rats (P < 0.05).

Conclusions: Together, these data suggest that creatine monohydrate potentially has a beneficial influence on bone function and structure; further investigation is warranted into its effect on bone functional properties and its effects in disorders associated with bone loss.

Author Information

1Departments of Pediatrics and Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, CANADA; 2Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, Brock University, St. Catharines, CANADA; 3Faculties of Kinesiology, Engineering, and Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, CANADA; and 4Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, CANADA

Address for correspondence: Jacqueline M. Bourgeois, M.D., Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine, McMaster University, 1200 Main St. W., Hamilton, Ontario, L8N 3Z5 Canada; E-mail: bourjac@hhsc.ca.

Submitted for publication September 2006.

Accepted for publication December 2006.

©2007The American College of Sports Medicine