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A double blind clinical trial evaluating the relative pharmacokinetics and bioavailability of oral creatine monohydrate when combined with either isomaltulose or dextrose in healthy adult males

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Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition20129 (Suppl 1) :P14

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  • Monosaccharide
  • Body Surface Area
  • Double Blind Clinical Trial
  • Creatine Monohydrate
  • Healthy Adult Male


Isomaltulose (6-0-α-D-glucopyranosyl-D-fructose) is a low-glycemic, low-insulinemic disaccharide that is absorbed more slowly than conventional sugars (monosaccharides). In sports nutrition, creatine monohydrate is often combined with dextrose (a monosaccharide) for the purpose of enhanced absorption and cellular uptake.


In a prospective, randomized, double blind, active-comparator-controlled, parallel group pilot study, 30 male subjects, age 27.0 ± 4.6 years, with BMI of 24.75 ± 1.99 kg/m2 and a body surface area (BSA) of 1.953 ± 00.75 m2, were randomly assigned to ingest 3 grams of creatine monohydrate (CM) in combination with isomaltulose (ISO) or dextrose (DEX) in 1 of 3 concentrations (5 gm liquid, 17 gm capsules or 50 gm liquid). Rate of absorption (tMax) and overall absorption (from BSA adjusted AUC0-8h and CMax) of CM was determined via changes in serum creatine over an 8-hour test period. Blood was collected at baseline and 0.5, 1, 2.5, 4 and 8 hours post ingestion with efficacy endpoints including CMax, tMax, AUC0-8h and λElim derived from normalized concentration vs. time curves for serum creatine (AUC by trapezoidal integration). Serum creatine levels were normalized by BSA using the Mosteller formula. For PK parameters, paired Student t test (or Wilcoxon if non-normally distributed) was used and for categorical variables, Fisher Exact test (or Chi-Square if necessary) was used. Statistics were calculated by R v2.14.0 (


For the 17 gm concentrations, ISO had a significantly higher CMax than DEX (18.1 ± 1.5 vs 12 ± 1.6 mg/dl*m2; p<0.001) and for the 50 gm concentrations, the CMax trended higher for ISO than DEX (19.1 ± 6.4 vs 13.1 ± 3.3 mg/dl*m2; p=0.099). The AUC for the 50 gm concentration was significantly higher for ISO than DEX (54.6 ± 9.2 vs 40.3 ± 10; p=0.046). The 17 gm (1.9 ± 0.8 hrs) and 50 gm (1.3 ± 0.7 hrs) concentrations were associated with larger tMax, which trended toward significance over the 5 gm concentration (1 ± 0 hrs) for ISO (p=0.078) and was not significant for DEX. For all 3 concentrations, the CMax and AUC were significantly higher for ISO than DEX (17.8 ± 4.7 vs 13.5 ± 2.8 mg/dl*m2 and 50.8 ± 17.1 vs 38.8 ± 10.3; p=0.005 and p=0.027 respectively).


CM appears to be absorbed more efficiently when combined with ISO over DEX supported by a significantly higher Cmax for the 17 g concentration and a significantly higher AUC for the 50 g concentration. The 17 and 50 gm formulations appear to be superior to the 5 gm concentration. ISO appears to be a beneficial carbohydrate for facilitating the delivery of creatine to the body.



Hong Kong Life Sciences Company Limited. Wanchai, Hong Kong.

Authors’ Affiliations

Miami Research Associates, 6141 Sunset Drive Suite 301, Miami, FL 33143, USA


© Kalman et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2012

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.