Terpene Glossary

Chemical Properties

Flash Point: 91°F/32.7°C
Boiling Point: 313°F/156°C
Color: Colorless
Odor: Fresh, Piney
CAS#: 80 - 56 - 8
Molecular Formula: C10H16

Therapeutic Benefits

Analgesic: Relieves pain
Antibacterial: Slows bacterial growth
Anti-inflammatory: Reduces inflammation systemically
Anti-proliferative: Inhibits cancer cell growth
Antioxidant: Prevents oxidation damage to other molecules in the body

About Alpha-Pinene

Alpha-pinene (α-pinene) is one of the most notable and familiar terpenes that people are in contact with regularly. Because it is most popularly used in ordinary household products, cleaners, and even turpentine (a solvent commonly used as a paint thinner) the average person may use it without appreciating that, as a terpene, it also has a variety of therapeutic properties.

α-pinene is the primary terpene found in pine trees which gives them their characteristic “piney fresh” scent. While α-pinene is the most familiar and commonly found terpene in nature and is found in pine and conifer trees, rosemary, and orange peels, β-pinene is responsible for the more earthy aromas such as those found in basil, dill, parsley, and hops. 

terpene glossary alpha pinene molecule lab effects
Alpha-pinene molecule

Although both α-pinene and β-pinene often exist in the same plant, it is the isolated extraction of α-pinene that allows for the harnessing of the terpenes therapeutic and medicinal properties. α-pinene is also a critical component in priming the human body to receive the healing benefits of CBD1 through the endocannabinoid system. So when α-pinene is used in tandem with high-quality CBD products, the “entourage effect” indicates some highly powerful medicinal uses.2

Because α-pinene can cross the blood-brain barrier -– the mechanism that protects the brain from most substances that disturb neural function and brain composition -– α-pinene has been found to improve cognitive function and memory, increase focus and alertness, and reduce anxiety. It also has many promising uses in patients with Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative disease (Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, multiple sclerosis, etc.). 

α-pinene has also been shown to manage pain, act as a systematic anti-inflammatory, fight cancer cells while slowing the growth of human cancer, combat bacteria and infection, work as an antioxidant, and open the airways in the lungs for people with asthma (as an alternative to a steroid inhaler).3,4

α-pinene is found in many popular cannabis strains including Jack Herer, Dutch Treat, OG Kush, Blue Dream, ChemDawg, Trainwreck, Romulan, Island Sweet Skunk, Strawberry Cough, and Bubba Kush.

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