What is Caryophyllene?

Caryophyllene

An informational guide to Caryophyllene, the terpene or essential oil, found within MAC’s small batch cannabis.

Structural formula of Caryophyllene placed over image of black pepper.
Structural formula of Caryophyllene placed over image of black pepper.

Terpenes provide a wide array of aromatic properties ranging from floral to musky. Caryophyllene, also known as Beta-Caryophyllene, is the primary terpene known for the spicy and peppery aroma that is distinguishable in certain strains. Looking at the spectrum of aroma that comes from terpenes, when it comes to the spicier side of the spectrum, Caryophyllene takes the cake.

Caryophyllene is one of the hundreds of terpenes found within the cannabis plant.

Macro shot of cannabis plant showing trichomes and hairs.
Macro shot of cannabis plant showing trichomes and hairs.

Caryophyllene is most commonly found in black pepper, cinnamon, oregano, cloves and hops. It’s one of the most thoroughly studied terpenes found in cannabis, with research dating back to the 1960s from Harvard researcher and organic chemist, E. J. Corey. Notable as a dietary cannabinoid, Caryophyllene is a frequent natural food additive, providing a sweet taste to enhance citrusy and spicy flavor profiles.

Caryophyllene’s Potential Medicinal Effects & Benefits

Caryophyllene has been studied to show no known psychoactive effects, but its unique molecular structure makes it the only known terpene to display characteristics of a cannabinoid by directly interacting with the CB2 receptor in the endocannabinoid system. This attributes to Caryophyllene’s powerful anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to potentially treat anxiety and depression. In addition to these properties, Caryophyllene is also widely considered to provide digestive protection, pain relief, and acts as an antibacterial agent.

Scientist holding cannabis plant and cannabis extract with gloves.
Scientist holding cannabis plant and cannabis extract with gloves.

Additional research has been studied to show Caryophyllene’s anti-microbial properties which has been shown to be effective at preventing both the growth and adhesion of the candida fungus. This fungus is commonly found in humans that are taking immunosuppressive drugs and/or undergoing transplants. Cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy treatment are one of the most susceptible groups to fungal and bacterial infections, and the group which stands the most to gain from the benefits of Beta-Caryophyllene.

Caryophyllene strains are generally understood to have a pain-relieving effect as a direct result of inflammation reduction. Due to Caryophyllene’s binding affinity for CB2 receptors in the brain, this terpene may also be able to have substantial effects on brain health and mental well-being. Using strains high in this terpene can create experiences that provide a sense of calm in the gut, which may aid in treating anxiety related issues in addition to a feeling of general well-being.

Promising research has been conducted on animals to uncover the effects of Caryophyllene, however, more research is needed to fully understand its effects on human health, both physically and mentally.

MAC Strains High in Caryophyllene

Photograph of Mass Alternative Care’s house strain Cookies and Cream.

Mass Alternative Care offers a variety of strains sourced from world-renown breeders. Cannabis varieties that contain high concentrations of Caryophyllene include Glue Zauce, Cookies and Cream, Dosidos X Bully Kush, Chemdawg and Punch Breath. For a current menu listing, please view our medical menu and adult use menu.

Stay tuned for upcoming blog posts that dive deeper into each individual terpene found within MAC’s house strains or come spark up a conversation with any of our agents!

What is THCV?

Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) is one of the many cannabinoids found within cannabis plants. THCV is a psychoactive compound being researched for its health benefits and ability to produce a motivated, alert and invigorated feeling of euphoria. Unlike THC, THCV acts as an appetite suppressant and research has been shown that THCV can help reduce or even prevent panic attacks. Further research has shown that THCV is effective in providing symptom relief for those affected by PTSD, Parkinson’s Disease, Seizures (including Epilepsy) and Alzheimer’s Disease.

What is Limonene?

Marijuana leaf and lemon isolated

An informational guide to Limonene, the terpene or essential oil, found within MAC’s small batch cannabis.

Imagine this, you just picked up an eighth of Crumbled Lime. You get home and it’s time to take a look at what’s in the container. You pop the top and are smacked with the overwhelming aroma of citrus and lemon. Where did that scent most likely come from? Limonene.

Cannabis leaf photographed with sliced lemons.
Marijuana leaf and citrus lemon isolated on white background.

Limonene is one of the hundreds of terpenes found within the cannabis plant.

Limonene is one of the hundreds of terpenes found within the cannabis plant. Terpenes work with cannabinoids and additional present terpenes to boost a strain’s effectiveness, this is called the entourage effect. Limonene is one of the most common terpenes found in cannabis, also found naturally within the rinds of citrus fruits (orange, grapefruit, lemon and lime) as well as seeds of caraway and dill, rosemary, mint and juniper.

If you missed last week’s post, or are new to cannabis, then you’re probably wondering, “What are terpenes?”. Terpenes are naturally derived chemicals found in the essential oils of the cannabis plant. The shiny, sticky, mushroom-shaped crystals found on the leaves and buds of the cannabis plant are called trichomes, where terpenes are made and stored.

Macro shot of Coughy Cake's Sister showing trichomes.
Macro shot of Mass Alternative Care’s house strain Coughy Cake’s Sister.

Limonene’s Potential Medicinal Effects & Benefits

In traditional medicine, limonene has been used as a component of remedies for bronchitis, heartburn and gallstones. Thankfully, there’s extensive research studying the effects of Limonene on the immune system. Studies have shown that Limonene possesses antibacterial, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory effects. These results are certainly promising in the combat against bacterial resistance, however additional studies are needed to better explain how this is achieved.

The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects of Limonene may attribute to its analgesic (pain relief) properties. This is why the common terpene can be found within some topical pain relievers.

There is further research still being conducted for Limonene’s beneficial effects on mental and mood disorders. A 2013 study published in BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine found evidence that Limonene improved anxiety-like states by interacting with the brain’s serotonin system. MAC’s strains high in Limonene are reported to provide relief with stress and anxiety, creating an elevated mood.

Despite the research available, little is still known about how Limonene interacts in the brain and body, and what doses are required to achieve desired effects. Many studies use high doses, much higher than what’s naturally found within cannabis.

Macro shot of trichomes, where terpenes are stored.
Macro shot of cannabis plant showing trichomes isolated on black background.

MAC Strains High in Limonene

Many assume limonene is abundant in strains that smell like lemon or citrus, but this isn’t always the case. No matter how great your nose is, always refer to the test results on the container. MAC’s variety of small-batch cannabis offers high quality bud with full test results listed on the menu. The combination of terpenes found within a strain can create unique aromas making single terpenes difficult to distinguish, but not impossible to identify. Some of MAC’s favorite high Limonene strains are Crumbled Lime, Glue Zauce, Dosidos X Bully Kush, Wedding Crasher, Sour Power OG and Coughy Cake.

Stay tuned for upcoming blog posts that dive deeper into each individual terpene found within MAC’s house strains or come spark up a conversation with any of our agents!