Limonene terpene in Cannabis plants
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Limonene is an aromatic terpene present in cannabis plant which is produced in the resin glands of the bud. In an isolated way, it is commonly associated with fruit bearing and citrus scents, and they’re found in many everyday products such as fruit peels, cosmetics and cleaning products.
What are Terpenes like the Limonene?
Terpenes are generated in the same glands that produce cannabinoids just like Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD), terpenes are aromatic oils that give color, scent and flavor to cannabis strains with distinguishing flavors as citrus, berry, mint and pine.
In contrast to other plants and flowers with smells, the development of terpenes in marijuana started by adaptation purposes: to repel predators and attract pollinators. There are many factors that affect in the development of tepernes in a plant, these include climate, weather, age and maturation, fertilizers, soil type and even time of day.
More than 100 different terpenes in Cannanbis plant have been identified, and each strain tended to a unique type and composition of terpenes. What’s known as a terpene profile. Terpenes can also perform a fundamental role in differentiating of the effects of several cannabis strains, defying the standard beliefs that are kept the varieties indica versus sativa varieties.
However, we need more studies to understand how and to what extent.
Limonene: the citrus terpene
Limonene is a monoterpene that, as we have seen, provides a strong citrus scent to marijuana, although above all it’s present in fruits as lemons, oranges, grapefruits, limes and among other citrus fruits. This is found in citrus peels and is the second most common terpene in nature and also the third most common terpene in cannabis. It’s present in many marijuana strains.
However, the limonene, modified, can also be used in the industry like in food, beverages, scents and soaps. In high concentrations can cause skin irritation, an exact the dose of solution makes the limonene be safe.
The use of chemicals can also make limonene into carvone. Strikingly, modern chemistry allows the transformation from the citrus flavor of limonene into mint. Carvone is contained in mint and it is also found in cannabis.
We’re supposed that limonene is often abundant in the strains with lemon smell, although this isn’t always the case. When looking for variety high in limonene, you’ll need to search tested products to know that the variety has a good limonene composition.
While THC(Tetrahydrocannabinol) usually makes up 10-30% of a flower’s dry weight, limonene is produced in small amounts, this one is usually less than 2%. It’s about volatile molecules and on which scientific analysis are required to be detected.
In spite of the possible therapeutic benefits of limonene, little is known about how it works in the brain and body, and what the doses are required to achieve these benefits. In many studies on limonene made, high dosage were used, much higher than the dose we found in marijuana.
This is the reason, that to offer a complete verdict of how limonene terpene affects humans, more marijuana investigations are needed, but studies about limonene have showed its potential in the following applications:
- Improves mood
- Relieves the stress
- Antifungal properties
- Antibacterial properties
- It can help relieve heartburn and gastric reflux
- Improves the absorption of other terpenes and chemicals through the skin, mucous membranes and digestive tract
There is also favorable evidence about antitumor effects of limonene. In the rodents of the laboratory, limonene inhibited the growth of skin and mammary tumors. The studies were made by a human clinical test with patients who had tumors in phase I and it was found that limonene is effective in reducing the growth of breast cancer tumors for almost a year.
Later studies found that daily supplementation of this terpene for 2-6 weeks silenced a protein that promoting the growth of breast cancer tumors, suggesting that daily consumption of limonene could inhibit the growth and propagation of breast tumors.
Additional reports have revealed the benefits of limonene in laboratory models of lung cancer and brain cancer when it causes the death of tumor cells.
It is unknown, however, whether the presence of various cannabinoids extends the anticancer effects of this terpene. Currently, there is no sufficient evidence to conclude that cannabis products with high content of this terpene will be effective as treatments against cancer in humans. Although everything will come.
Strains with limonene
Below, we leave you some varieties of Cannabis which have excellent proliferation of terpenes.
Do Si Dos 33
The first variety we bring you with a lot of lemon is the Do si Dos 33, a marijuana from Barney’s Farm seed bank with a unique terpene profile. In this way, it is a Cannabis plant with citrus flavor combined with sweet.
The Wedding Cake, it’s the beast within the powerful strains of the American West Coast. The organoleptic profile of this variety is complex and exquisite, being able to find flavors of lemon, vanilla, earth and a slight Skunk touch.
The future of limonene
Does limonene only stimulate the brain’s olfactory system, or does it directly affect the brain cells? We don’t know yet.
As opposed to other terpenes that comply with a specific role in the brain, as linalool and b-caryophyllene, the objectives of this terpene remain unclear.
When we understand better the objectives of limonene, the scientists in this area will be able to direct users towards strains or products which the therapeutic benefits of limonene be optimized by a specific profile.