Powerful Commonly Found Terpene Beta-Caryophyllene
Beta-Caryophyllene, more commonly referred to simply as Caryophyllene, is one of the most common terpenes found in cannabis plants. It is responsible for a great number of the spicy or hoppy smells and flavors in popular strains. It is also one of the most powerful terpenes.
As a powerhouse terpene, beta-Caryophyllene exists in a league of its own. It has the unique ability to interact with the endocannabinoid system directly, making it one of the most influential terpenes. Research shows that, when consumed orally, Caryophyllene can bind directly to the CB2 receptor.
Beyond cannabis, Caryophyllene is used in natural food flavorings to provide a taste that resembles allspice. It occurs naturally in black pepper, hops, rosemary, caraway, cloves, and cinnamon, making it a staple of virtually every Western diet. It is found is several kinds of essential oils and is partially responsible for the scent of horse manure.
Chemically, Caryophyllene is one of the larger terpenes found in cannabis plant. It is a bicyclic sesquiterpene, meaning it has three isoprene units. Interestingly, it is also the only terpene to contain a cyclobutene ring and a trans-double in a nine-member ring. This combination is incredibly rare among all natural molecules.
Research into Caryophyllene has confirmed it is a full antagonist of the CB2 receptor in rodents, which suggests it can influence certain portions of the human endocannabinoid system as well. Comparatively, CBN is a partial antagonist of the CB2 receptor. It has also been proven to improve tolerance to cold in mammals. A famous paper explains how giant pandas frequently cover themselves in substances high in beta-Caryophyllene as protection against low temperatures.
It is found is a wide variety of cannabis strains, often in large quantities. Varietals with particularly high amounts of beta-Caryophyllene include Bubba Kush, Sour Diesel, Gelato, Chem Dawg, Glue, and Girl Scout Cookies.
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