What are terpenes?

The basis of the fragrance
So-called terpenes and terpenoids are mainly responsible for the smell or aroma of plants. Terpenes are better known as the main constituent of essential oils naturally produced in plants. Almost all plants produce terpenes - some rather few, others, such as citrus plants, conifers or cannabis, produce a relatively high number of terpenes. Terpenes are aromatic plant extracts that are mainly obtained from plant material by steam distillation.

In the central nervous system 
Since terpenes are nanoparticle tiny, aromatic molecules, they can cross the blood-brain barrier immediately and get into the central nervous system to act - in contrast to most molecules of regular pharmaceutical active ingredients, which are too large for that. 

Terpenes from cannabis
As from many other plants, terpenes can also be extracted from the leaves and flowers of the cannabis plant. The many different varieties of hemp plants each have their own terpene profiles. Scientific research currently assumes that hemp terpenes have medicinal properties that, like cannabinoids, can act on the body's own endocannabinoid system. 


Various more common monoterpenes which are also used in TerpPens:

Pinene is known in principle from every coniferous forest.
As the name suggests, they occur mainly in pines, but also in spruce and other conifers, but also in some citrus fruits and balsam trees. Pinene have anti-inflammatory properties, can relax muscles, and reduce airway narrowing. From a chemical point of view, pinene is a bicyclic monoterpene that occurs in a total of 6 isomers. The most common forms are α-pinene and β-pinene, each in 2 isomers. Ultimately, the division into isomers means that the chemical compound 'pinene' forms a total of 6 different forms. Although these have an identical molecular formula, they are chemically different in structure. The aromatic properties of pinene therefore also differ depending on the isomer. The aroma of α-pinenes is clearly reminiscent of that of pine or rosemary, the aromatic structure of β-pinenes is more similar to that of dill, parsley or basil.
The healing potential of pinene, in turn, has been known for centuries. Even in ancient times, tea preparations with a high pinene content were used to alleviate numerous ailments. Some indigenous tribes also use e.g. Pine needle tea traditionally used against respiratory infections and lung infections. The different isomers differ slightly in their possible therapeutic properties. We have summarized the most important ones below.

Antibacterial potential:
In a 2007 study of the treatment of infectious endocarditis, pinene was found to be certain Kill types of bacteria.

Positive effects in the lungs:
Studies have shown that pinene consumption has one bronchodilator effect, so one Expansion of the bronchi in the lungs, unfolded. Especially for Asthmatic an interesting approach to dealing with acute breathing difficulties. Various studies also show that Pinene help the lungs Viral infections such as viral bronchitis or. pneumonia to protect.

Also an effectiveness against the Coronavirus strains in the lungs Could be demonstrated. (See: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6259611/)

Anti-inflammatory effect:
Pinene look strong anti-inflammatory, According to studies, the use of pinenes is a promising approach to treating conditions such as arthritis.

Anti-carcinogenic potential:
If one can believe the results of various studies, Pinene inhibit the multiplication of cancer cells.

Molecular formula: C10H16
Molar mass: 136.24 g mol − 1
Physical state: liquid
Brief description: colorless liquid with a turpentine odor

Other names:
Pin-2 (3) -en

2,6,6-trimethylbicyclo- [3.1.1] hept-2-en
Pin-2 (10) -en
2 (10) pinene
6,6-dimethyl-2-methylenebicyclo- [3.1.1] heptane

CAS numbers:

18172-67-3 2437-95-8 (±)
80-56-8 (unspecified)
23089-32-9 (±)
127-91-3 (unspecified)


Myrcene basically has an earthy scent of musk and cloves. Myrcene is found in many plants, including in mangoes, parsley, Pine trees, juniper, Ginger plants, Mints , sage, Caraway seed, fennel, tarragon, dill, mugwortAngelica, hop and hemp as well as many others.

Numerous positive properties have been demonstrated for myrcene in various studies:

Pain Relief:
Several studies suggest that myrcene has high potential in the Pain therapy application having. This effect is apparently due to the fact that myrcene is the Release of endogenous opioids can promote in the body. It stimulates the body to produce its own pain relieving substances.

High anti-inflammatory potential:
An anti-inflammatory effect has been demonstrated in various studies with promising results. In the studies, mostly carried out on animals, myrcene has proven to be powerful anti-inflammatory exposed.

Strengthening the immune system:
In further studies a significant immunoregulatory effect be detected. It inhibits, among other things the production of nitrogen oxides in the phagocytes of the body's immune system, also known as macrophages, and supports them in their work.

Molecular formula: C10H16
Other names: 7-methyl-3-methylene-1,6-octadiene / β-myrcene

Brief description: colorless to yellowish liquid
CAS number: 123-35-3 
Molar mass: 136.24 g mol − 1
Physical state: liquid


As the name suggests, lime has a strong citrus scent and has been used in many cosmetics and foods for decades. Limonene is absorbed very quickly in the body and can even help to increase the absorption of other monoterpenes.
In studies, limonene stood out positively as a powerful antimicrobial agent. Studies are currently underway to further explore the potential of limonene as an anti-cancer agent. Limonene is also said to be good for bronchitis and help with weight loss.

There are already some studies and evidence that demonstrate the health benefits of limonene

Mood-lifting effect:
Lime works mood lifting. Field research has confirmed that limonene is a highly effective natural antidepressant acts. The aromatherapy application with citrus fruit essences, which naturally contained a lot of limonene, led to one in test subjects significant improvement in symptoms a depressive mood.

Good against fears: 
Several studies and the centuries of experience of classic aromatherapy show that lime consumption is efficient Alleviate anxiety and stress can.

Strengthening the immune system:
As various scientific studies confirm, limonene has positive influence on our immune system.

Fight inflammation with limonene:
In further scientific studies it became clear that limonene anti-inflammatory effects owns.

Anti-carcinogenic effect:
According to scientific research, limonene could anti-cancer Act. In a study carried out on mice, it was shown that limonene is the Inhibit the growth of breast tumors could. In the subsequent clinical studies on humans, this effect was confirmed in several patients. Another study suggested that several weeks of treatment with limonene inhibited a certain protein that is responsible for the growth of breast cancer cells. It therefore seems obvious that the daily intake of limes corresponds to the Curb the growth and spread of breast cancer tumors.

Other studies suggest that limonene helps Lung carcinomas and brain tumors can initiate programmed cell death of cancer cells.

Strong against mold:
Limes inhibits the growth of (mold) fungi, especially in the species that can mainly affect food.

Molecular formula: C10H16
Molar mass: 136.24 g mol − 1
Physical state: liquid
Brief description: colorless, flammable liquid, characteristic lemon odor

Other names:

1-methyl-4- (1-methylethenyl) cyclohexene

CAS numbers:
7705-14-8 [(±) -limons]

138-86-3 [dipentene unspecified]
6876-12-6 [trans -1-methyl-4- (methylvinyl) cyclohexene]

The mono-terpene linalool is another very well-known and well-researched monoterpene. Linalool is ultimately the characteristic and odor-forming mono-terpene of lavender, whose calming effect is often used in phytotherapy. Interestingly, the terpene linalool is also said to have anti-inflammatory properties.

The following areas of activity have already been researched in more detail in studies:

Neuroprotective effect:
In connection with a study to alleviate the effects of ischemic events (stroke) could one for Linalool clear neuroprotective effect be established. Linalool protects the cells in the brain before the disintegration accompanying the ischemic event.

Pain relieving effect:
Studies on the treatment of Fibromyalgia prove a clear one for Linalool analgesic (pain-relieving) effect.

Antimicrobial & antioxidant potential:
Linalool has the potential not only for plants Protect bacterial infestation, it can also work effectively for humans in this regard. Strong too antioxidant effect of Linalool was used in a study to treat people with Carpal tunnel syndrome proven.

Anxiety-relieving potential:
In a study with rodents it could be demonstrated that the animals had inhaled the linalool-containing vapor in sudden occurrences Stressful situations tended to to stay calmer and so to better face or escape the situation.

Strengthening the immune system:
Persistent stress inevitably leads to changes in human cells Immune system. In such a stressful situation the saturation of the blood decreases with the ones for which Defense against infections responsible, white blood cells (leukocytes) sometimes strongly. 
As a result, this effect makes the organism more susceptible to external infections. In a corresponding study with rats it could be observed that linalool curbs this reduction and thereby the Reduced likelihood of health effects from stress.

Another study suggests that linalool has great potential to block the receptors that bind glutamate in the body.

Glutamate, mainly known as a synthetic flavor enhancer in the food industry, is also one of the most important neurotransmitters of the central nervous system.
Glutamate is naturally released in the body in the form of glutamic acid by neurons and glial cells. An increased Glutamic acid saturation in the body is common with the appearance of epilepsy connected. The one caused by Linalool Blockage of the corresponding receptors, could be the most promising therapeutic effect of linalool explain in certain types of epilepsy. 

Other names:

3,7-dimethylocta-1,6-dien-3-ol (IUPAC)
Linalyl alcohol
Licareol [(R) - (-) - Linalool]
Coriandrol [(S) - (+) - Linalool]

Molecular formula: C10H18O

Brief description: colorless liquid smelling of lily of the valley

CAS numbers:
78-70-6 (unspec.)

126-91-0 [(R) - (-) - Linalool]
126-90-9 [(S) - (+) - linalool]

Molar mass: 154.25 g mol − 1
Physical state: liquid



Wikipedia (various)

Inhibitory effect of β-pinene, α-pinene and eugenol on the growth of potential infectious endocarditis causing Gram-positive bacteria. Aristides Medeiros Leite, Edeltrudes de Oliveira Lima, Evandro Leite de Souza, Margareth de Fátima Formiga Melo Diniz, Vinícius Nogueira Trajano, Isac Almeida de Medeiros.

Comparative anti-infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) activity of (-) - pinene: effect on nucleocapsid (N) protein. Yang Z, Wu N, Zu Y, Fu Y.

Anti-tumor effect of α-pinene on human hepatoma cell lines through inducing G2 / M cell cycle arrest. Chen W, Liu Y, Li M, Mao J, Zhang L, Huang R, Jin X, Ye L.

Antioxidant, anticancer and genotox. Elanur Aydin, Hasan Türkez, Fatime Geyikoğlu Amelioration of Scopolamine-Induced Learning and Memory Impairment by α-Pinene in C57BL / 6 Mice Gil-Yong Lee, Chan Lee, Gyu Hwan Park, and Jung-Hee Jang.

Rao, V.S.N., A.M.S. Menezes, and G.S.B. Viana. "Effect of myrcene on nociception in mice." Journal of pharmacy and pharmacology 42.12 (1990): 877-878.

Paumgartten, F. J. "Neurobehavioral study of the effect of betamyrcene on rodents." Braz. J. Med. Biol (1991).

Andre CM +, Hausman JF, Guerriero G (2016). "Cannabis sativa: The Plant of the Thousand and One Molecules." Front Plant Sci. 7:19

Lichtman AH, Cook SA, Martin BR. Investigation of brain sites mediating cannabinoid-induced antinociception in rats: evidence supporting periaqueductal gray involvement. Pharmacol Exp Ther. 1996 Feb; 276 (2): 585-93.

Souza, M.C., et al. "Evaluation of the anti-inflammatory activity of essential oils from two Asteraceae species." The Pharmazie-An International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences 58.8 (2003): 582-586.

Gour N, Wills-Karp M (2015). "IL-4 and IL-13 signaling in allergic airway disease". Cytokines. 75 (1): 68-78.

Lim, Soon Sung, et al. "Effect of the essential oil from the flowers of Magnolia Sieboldii on the lipopolysaccharide-induced production of nitric oxide and prostaglandin E2 by rat peritoneal macrophages." Planta medica 68.05 (2002): 459-462.

Tavares, Ana Cristina, et al. "Essential oils from Distichoselinum tenuifolium: chemical composition, cytotoxicity, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties." Journal of ethnopharmacology 130.3 (2010): 593-598.

Morisset V, Urban L. Cannabinoid-induced presynaptic inhibition of glutamatergic EPSCs in substantia gelatinosa neurons of the rat spinal cord. J Neurophysiol. 2001 Jul; 86 (1): 40-8

Effects of citrus fragrance on immune function and depressive states. Komori T1, Fujiwara R, Tanida M, Nomura J, Yokoyama MM.

Anti ‐ inflammatory Effects of Limonene from Yuzu (Citrus junos Tanaka) Essential Oil on Eosinophils. Ryoji Hirota Ngatu Nlandu Roger Hiroyuki Nakamura Hee ‐ Sun Song First published: 05 April 2010

Limonene-induced Regression of Mammary Carcinomas Jill D. Haag, Mary J. Lindstrom, and Michael N. Gould2 Departments of / fuman Oncology ¡J.D. H., M. N. fi.I and Biostatistics ¡M.J. L.¡, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, H'isconsin 53792

Phase I and pharmacokinetic study of d-limonene in patients with advanced cancer David M. Vigushin, Grace K. Poon, Alan Boddy, Jacqueline English, Gavin W. Halbert, Christos Pagonis, Michael Jarman, R. Charles Coombes. Cancer Research Campaign Phase I / II Clinical Trials Committee

d-limonene exhibits antitumor activity by inducing autophagy and apoptosis in lung cancer Xiao Yu, Hongyan Lin, Yu Wang, Wenwen Lv, Shuo Zhang, Ying Qian, Xiaobei Deng, Nannan Feng, Herbert Yu and Biyun Qian

Potential antioxidant and anxiolytic effects of (+) - limonene epoxide in mice after marble-burying test. de Almeida AA1, de Carvalho RB2, Silva OA3, de Sousa DP4, de Freitas RM2.


Antioxidant activity of linalool in patients with carpal tunnel syndrome
Geun-Hye Seol, Purum Kang, Hui Su Lee, Geun Hee Seol 

Neuroprotective effects of (-) - linalool against oxygen-glucose deprivation-induced neuronal injury Hyeon Park, Geun Hee Seol, Sangwoo Ryu, In-Young Choi 

Evaluation of linalool, a natural antimicrobial and insecticidal essential oil from basil: effects on poultry. Ross C Beier, J Allen Byrd 2nd, Leon F Kubena, Michael E Hume, Jackson L McReynolds, Robin C Anderson, David J Nisbet

Aromatherapy Improves Work Performance Through Balancing the Autonomic Nervous System. Lin Huang, Lluis Capdevila 

Pain relief assessment by aromatic essential oil massage on outpatients with primary dysmenorrhea: a randomized, double-blind clinical trial. Ming-Chiu Ou, Tsung-Fu Hsu, Andrew C Lai, Yu-Ting Lin, Chia-Ching Lin

Physical and psychologic effects of aromatherapy inhalation on pregnant women: a randomized controlled trial. Toshiko Igarashi