Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
from September 2014
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2009) 08, 516 - 522

Research article
The effects of Creatine Long-Term Supplementation on Muscle Morphology and Swimming Performance in Rats
Ahmet Yildiz, Ercan Ozdemir, Sefa Gulturk, Sena Erdal
Author Information
Departments of Physiology Cumhuriyet University School of Medicine, 58140 Sivas, Turkey
Publish Date
Received: 24-04-2009
Accepted: 14-07-2009
Published (online): 01-12-2009
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Creatine (Cr) has been shown to increase the total muscle mass. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of Cr supplementation on muscle morphology and swimming performance, using an animal model. Each rat was subjected to exercise 15-minute period daily for the 12 weeks. The rats were randomly divided into four groups: no Cr supplementation (CON), no Cr supplementation and incomplete food intake (lacking lysine and methionine in diet for rats) (INCO), Cr supplementation 1 g·kg-1·day-1 (CREAT-I) and Cr supplementation 2 g·kg-1·day-1 (CREAT-II). Three months later, all groups adult rats exercised in swimming pool chambers. Swimming time was recorded as minute for each rat. Following swimming performance period, the animals were killed by cervical dislocation and the gastrocnemius and diaphragm muscles were dissected. Serial slices of 5-7 μm were allocated paraffin wax and histochemical staining procedure of cross-sections was carried out with heamatoxylin-eosin technics. All groups gained body weight at the end of 12 weeks but there was no statistical difference among them. Swimming time values were statistical difference between CREAT-II and CON group as well as between CREAT-I and CON group (p < 0.05). In the INCO group was determined increased connective tissue cell of the muscle sample. In contrast, in the CREAT-I and CREAT-II group, the basic histological changes were large-scale muscle fibers and hypertrophic muscle cells. These results suggest that long-term creatine supplementation increased the number of muscle fibers and enhanced endurance swimming performance in rats.

Key words: Creatine, muscle hyprtrophy, muscle morphology, exercise, swimming performance

           Key Points
  • There is no study about the effects of creatine long-term supplementation on muscle morphology and swimming performance in rats.
  • Long-term creatine supplementation increase muscle hypertrophy (but not body weight) and enhance endurance swimming performance in rats.
  • The quantitative analysis indicated that the number of muscle fibers per defined area increased in creatine supplementation groups.
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