In 1887, German chemist Otto Wallach determined the structures of several terpenes and discovered that all of them were composed of two or more five-carbon units of isoprene
Terpenes are a large class of plant secondary products with a major role in defense against plant-feeding insects and herbivores. However, not all terpenoids act as secondary products. Many have important roles in primary processes, such as photosynthesis, stability of cell membranes, signaling, and as source compounds for several plant hormones.
All terpenes are formed by condensation of two or more isoprene units and are classified on the basis of the number of isoprene units they contain.Some terpenes are being formed from linear arrangements of isoprene units followed by various cyclizations and rearrangements of the carbon skeleton.
Terpenes in Food
Terpenes aren’t just something you buy as an extract or enjoy infused into your favorite products. These naturally occurring compounds are present in a number of foods we eat on a regular basis.
Terpenes are there, in abundance, quietly coloring our experiences and providing pleasurable moments.
Terpenes in Cannabis
The most abundant terpenes in cannabis are Pinene,Linalool,Caryophyllene,Myrcene, Limonene and Humulene. These are specific to strain genetics and alter the cannabinoid’s effect within the Endocannabinoid System. Different stains can feel different due to the terpene concentrations and mechanisms.
Terpenes are the primary components of essential oils — aromatics. They get incorporated into perfumes, cosmetics, scented candles and many more products. Unfortunately Terpenes oxidize easily due to autoxidation on air exposure.Freeze drying plant material can prolong shelf life and improve potency.
There’s no recognizable difference, for example, between isolated caryophyllene from black pepper and from cannabis. However, there is a difference between the other compounds that interact in cannabis compared with other plants. This Synergistic effect is known as the Entourage Effect. Since Cannabis is not legal internatio
nally many producers prefer Botanically Derived Terpenes.
Terpenes in Topicals and Creams
One way that topical cannabis producers are making their product attractive to new audiences is by infusing them with pure terpenes that imitate popular genetic strains. Not only does this enhance the literal medicinal value of topical cannabis products, it also enhances their scent, turning them into an aromatherapy product as well as a transdermal ones. Other producers use these terpenes simply for their respective chemical properties.
Terpenes Enhance Skin Penetration
Certain terpenes are excellent carriers for the delivery of a wide range of medications.
Terpenes have been incorporated as adjuvants in the form of Penetration Enhancers or absorption promoters for improved drug delivery from various dosage forms including solutions, gels, and transdermal therapeutic systems.
The same terpenes that have proven themself so useful for human use have an adverse effect on invertebrates. Terpenes can be used as an organic non lethal pest repellent. Terpenes offer a promising alternative to conventional synthetic pesticides.
Terpene Healing Properties
Each terpene has particular chemical properties and recommended dosage specific to application and delivery method. Chemical modifications of terpenes are being developed by pharmaceutical companies accompanied with peer reviewed research.
- Relaxant and sedating effects,
- Inhibits cancer growth
- Healing of the mucous cells
- Aids digestion
- Aid immune system
- Suppresses muscle spasm