Cannabis Science

22 April 2020

What is cannabis terpene terpinolene, and what are its effects?

In Cannabis terpinolene represents one the big eight “Terpene Super Classes”, alongside with myrcene, ocimene, limonene, α-pinene, humulene, linalool, and β-caryophyllene (BCP) and its presence is generally typical of sativa strains.

Plants that contain Terpinolene

Terpinolene is the major component found in Parsnip oil (Pastinaca Sativa) and one of the main ingredients of many other essential oils, including that of Cannabis, Juniper, Mint and other members of Lamiaceae family, Myristica (Nutmeg), oranges, Rosemary and Sage. It is also a component of pine and Tea Tree oil.

The flavour and aroma profile of Terpinolene

Terpinolene emanates a sweet pine and fresh lemony peel fragrance with spicy and woody undertones and a slightly sweet citrus flavour.
From the chemical point of view, terpinolene is a cyclic monoterpene  (Figure 1). It appears as a slightly whitish to light amber coloured liquid or oil and is usually moderately soluble to insoluble in water.

Industrial uses for Terpinolene

Terpinolene is frequently used as a solvent for resins in the manufacturing of plastics and synthetic resins. It is also used as a flavouring agent in foods and as a fragrance for many commercial products like detergents, soaps, and perfumes.

Medicinal properties of Terpinolene

From the medical point of view, terpinolene has shown a variety of effects:

  • Cancer: in cells treated with sage or rosemary extract, terpinolene was found to reduce the expression levels of the protein kinase AKT (which mediates cell proliferation and survival signals, and contributes to cancer progression) thus inhibiting cell proliferation 48 hours after the herbal treatments. Furthermore, at very high dosing (>50 mg/L), terpinolene demonstrated an antiproliferative effect against neuroblastoma.
  • Antioxidant in the prevention of Coronary Artery Disease: Terpinolene, in association with two antioxidant agents – vitamin E (Alpha-Tocopherol) and Beta Carotene – has demonstrated to prevent the oxidation of “bad” cholesterol (“low-density lipoprotein (LDL) – cholesterol, or LDL-C) and the fatty components of bad cholesterol undergo changes resulting in the formation of fatty deposits or plaques (Atherosclerosis).
  • Sedative: According to a 2013 study on mice, the sedative effect attributed to terpinolene may be due to its structural characteristics. Another study showed that such an effect might be attributable to cholinesterase inhibition in the presence of THC. The route of administration though olfactory stimulation may play a further role in the expression of terpinolene sedative activity.
  • Antifungal: terpinolene has also shown antifungal and larvicidal activities.
  • Anti-inflammatory: probably via 5-HT2A receptors

Looking to grow your own sativa-dominant cannabis strain high in Terpinolene?

Jack Herer

A large flower from the cannabis strain known as Jack Herer

Jack Herer is undoubtedly one of the most famous cannabis strains available today. Named after the marijuana activist, this particular breed of Jack Herer marijuana seeds comes from our very own range of Guru Seeds.

Chocolope

Chocolope cannabis strain growing outdoors in nature

Chocolope from DNA Genetics is a 95% pure sativa with a flavor that goes well with morning coffee! It’s the genetic combination of two powerful Sativas; Chocolate Thai and Cannalope Haze. This strain has fast become a fan favorite in Dutch coffeeshops.

 

Pineapple Kush

Pineapple Kush seeds growing outdoors in flowering phase

Tropical in scent, as well as appearance, Pineapple Kush from Royal Queen Seeds, is an indica-dominant hybrid that offers the ultimate flavour for pure relaxation. You guessed it; pineapple is the most noticeable scent in this Kush.

 

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