Presentation of the main cannabis terpenes
As we explained in our first article, the terpenes in cannabis are responsible for the aroma and flavor of the plant. In this second article, we present you the main terpenes contained in the cannabis plant and we describe you what are their specific properties. Follow the guide!
What are the real properties of terpenes?
For many years, a multitude of exhaustive scientific studies have been carried out in order to discover the effects as well as the properties of the different phytocannabinoids (especially for the THC and the CBD) of our favorite plant. However, many mysteries remain concerning the terpenes. Here again, a number of rigorous investigations have been carried out, however the scientific evidence gathered remains insufficient to draw any formal conclusions regarding the beneficial properties of terpenes.
Some of these studies confirm that terpenes actively contribute to " The Entourage effect ». This means concretely that they reinforce or amplify the beneficial action of the various cannabinoids present in the plant. This is how neuroscientist Ethan Russo, has demonstrated, through a study, that terpenes could reduce the adverse effects of THC, increasing at the same time its therapeutic effectiveness. Russo concludes that this close relationship between cannabinoids and terpenes significantly increases the therapeutic power Cannabis in different pathologies.
As we have known for some time now, all cannabinoids act directly on the receivers of the Endocannabinoid system present in our organization. It would seem that it is the same for terpenes, we can even say that they could play the role of amplifiers depending on the composition of active ingredients contained in the plant.
It would even seem that certain terpenes would be able to modify the quantity of THC crossing the Hémato-Encephalic barrier (a part which separates the brain from the blood, in order to avoid that potentially harmful substances can reach the brain). This is how terpenes work in the effect of cannabis on the human body. Other parallel studies claim that these same compounds could also act on our internal production of dopamine and of serotonin.
The effects produced by a terpene are variable, such as the myrcene which produces a relaxing and narcotic effect, the silt who improves mental acuity and concentration. Fairly recent studies, say the terpene β-caryophyllène would have properties neuroprotectors which can contribute beneficial to the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson disease. Even if some questions remain, terpenes could be at the origin of an important therapeutic value, by acting in complementarity with the various phytocannabinoids present in the cannabis plant. Basically, the complexity remains precisely on this point, as there are so many possible combinations in the availability or presence of the different cannabinoids and terpenes, as well as the proportion of each of these elements at the same time. This is why it is necessary to continue many investigations in this sense, in order to discover new concrete therapeutic possibilities certified by the medical profession.
The main terpenes of cannabis
They are composed of 2 isoprene units, in other words, two blocks of 5 units. The best known monoterpenes are myrcene, alfa and beta-pinene (a-pinene and β-pinene), limonene, beta-caryophyllene (β-caryopphyllene), terpinolene and ocimene.
the myrcene or β-myrcene is a monoterpene. This is indisputably the terpene that we find most commonly in the cannabis plant, because It constitutes 50 % total production of essential oil of the latter. Its aromatic influence reflects a mixture terrly, of musk and grassy. Myrcene is the precursor of other terpenes. A certain number of studies confirm that it is the phytotoTepene dominant in a great majority of Indica-dominant varieties, whose effect is sedative and relaxing. It would seem that if the plant contains a rate of concentration higher or equal to 0,5 % of myrcene, then its action would be more marked in this direction. Other studies mention that this terpene would be interesting to deal with problems insomnia. It would seem that he also has anti-inflammatory, antibiotic and antimutagnes.
the silt is a monocyclic monoterpene, which is why certain varieties of cannabis offer us this delicious and intense scent citrus. We realize that the varieties containing a high level of firewall produce an effect invigorating. We find this terpene in certain aromatic herbs such as the rosemary, the mint, and also in all citrus. From a physiological point of view, the lemonene is known for its many virtues antibacterial, antioxidants and antifungal. On the psychological level, the latter acts as an excellent antidepressant natural, as it has the ability to significantly improve mood. Some scientific studies claim that this terpene would have the power to help restore the homeostatic balance. Knowing that imbalance of neuroendocrine and immune function (which directly affect homeostasis), is directly linked to psychosomatic or psychiatric disorders, limonene could act effectively on the treatment of diseases such as depression Or various anxiety disorders.
the pinene is a bicyclical monoterpene, which simultaneously expresses an obvious double aromatic expression and similar to that of pine and fir. Two structural isomers are naturally present in our environment: α-Pinène and β-pinène, the first being the one found most frequently. This terpene has a protective function for the cannabis plant because it has an effect repulsive against pests. We can also meet him in many other species in the plant world, such as the parsley, the rosemary, the dill, the basil and conifers. A number of scientific studies confirm that Pinène has properties anti-inflammatory, bronchodilators even or even anti-cargeries proven. A clinical study carried out in 2011, has shown that α-Pinène acts as a acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, and that it is capable of modulating the activity of this enzyme, which can contribute to an improvement in memory and processes cognitive. This is the reason why we can deduce from it that it offers the possibility of reducing the effects produced by THC. Most cannabis varieties with a High Pinene content, generally produce an effect energizing.
Β-karyophyllene is a sesquiterpene that is found quite frequently in cannabis, but also in basil, clove and cinnamon. It is responsible for the aromatic, slightly pungent and woody influence of certain genetics. What allows us to understand logically that it constitutes one of the active principles of the black pepper. This specific terpene could be considered as a cannabinoid in its own right, as it selectively binds to the CB2 receptor.
the Terpinolène is a terpene which is often present in a very wide range of cannabic strains, but generally in very low proportion. The varieties in which the Terpinolène is dominant are not very common. This terpene has a fairly complex organoleptic profile, because it can be described as a mixed wooded, herbaceous and floral. We find him in the lilac, the tree tea, them apples, the cumin or the nut of nutmeg. Studies carried out in the laboratory, and more precisely on mice, have shown that its inhalation produces effects sedatives. It would also seem that this terpene has properties anti-cancerous and antioxidants. Other recent scientific research also explores the role of Terpinolnes in the prevention of coronary diseases, using other antioxidants.
Ocimène offer a soft scent floral and wooded, quite subtle. As with Terpinolène, it is a terpene present in a very large sample of cannabis varieties, however rare are those where this aromatic component is dominant. We also find it in a large set of plants, as The hop, kumquat, mango, basil, bergamot, lavender, orchids or the pepper, in variable quantities. Ocimène is widely used in the perfume industry, due to its aromatic profile. There is scientific evidence revealing its properties anti-inflammatory. In general, it is produced by a plant to act as a powerful repulsive Faced with pest insects, it therefore plays a protective role.