Creatine: a safety concern

Creatine: a safety concern

Toxicology Letters 152 (2004) 275 Letter to the Editor Creatine: a safety concern The safety of creatine to enhance athletic performance was recentl...

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Toxicology Letters 152 (2004) 275

Letter to the Editor

Creatine: a safety concern The safety of creatine to enhance athletic performance was recently reviewed (Brudnal, 2004) without reference to a potentially important toxicological problem. Under conditions that exist the human stomach (high acidity and supply of nitrite from food and saliva), creatine can react to form N-nitrososarcosine (Archer et al., 1971) that is known to induce esophageal cancer in rats (Druckrey et al., 1967) and stomach cancer in mice (Wogan et al., 1975). As I have previously suggested (Archer, 1999), the potential for the formation of this carcinogen should be considered by those advocating the safety of creatine as a performance-enhancing substance.

Archer, M.C., Clark, S.D., Thilly, J.E., Tannenbaum, S.R., 1971. Environmental nitroso compounds: reaction of nitrite with creatine and creatinine. Science 174, 1341–1343. Brudnal, M.A., 2004. Creatine: are the benefits worth the risk? Toxicol. Lett. 150, 123–130. Druckrey, H., Preussmann, R., Ivankovic, S., Schmahl, D., 1967. Organotrope carcinogene Wirkung bei 65 verschiedenen N-Nitroso-Verbindungen an BD-Ratten. Z. Krebsforsch. 69, 103–201. Wogan, G.N., Paglialunga, S., Archer, M.C., Trannenbaum, S.R., 1975. Carcinogenicity of nitrosation products of ephedrine, sarcosine, folic acid and creatinine. Cancer Res. 35, 1981–1984.

References Archer, M.C., 1999. Letter to the Editor. Clin. J. Sports Med. 9, 119.

0378-4274/$ – see front matter © 2004 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved. doi:10.1016/j.toxlet.2004.06.001

Michael C. Archer Department of Nutritional Sciences Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto Toronto, Canada M5S 3E2 Tel.:+1 416 978 8195; fax: +1 416 971 2366 E-mail address: [email protected] (M.C. Archer) 18 May 2004 Available online 28 July 2004