This study investigated the morphological and functional changes in peripheral nerves during the maturation and aging process. In a mouse sciatic nerve model, electron micrographs revealed that the number of myelin sheath lamellae gradually increased from 1 week through 12 months of age, when it reached the peak value, and then remained unchanged until 18 months of age; electrophysiological examinations showed that the amplitude of compound muscle action potentials gradually increased from 1 week through 18 months of age and displayed a positive linear correlation with the number of myelin sheath lamellae. Western blot analysis exhibited the age-related expression patterns of four myelin-associated proteins, i.e., myelin-associated glycoprotein (MAG), myelin basic protein (MBP), glycoprotein P0 (P0) and peripheral myelin protein 22 (PMP22). And MAG, MBP and PMP22 showed linear negative or positive correlations with the number of myelin sheath lamellae. Our results suggest that the morphological and functional changes in peripheral nerves are closely related to each other and the myelin-associated proteins perform distinct actions on the formation, maturation, degeneration and regeneration of myelin sheaths. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.