Updated: Mar 24
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An October 2022 study entitled "Effects of Super-class Cannabis Terpenes Beta-caryophyllene and Alpha-pinene on Zebrafish Behavioral Biomarkers" that was published in the journal Scientific Reports suggested the existence of a special subclass of terpenes that it dubbed super class terpenes.
"There are more than fifty cannabis terpenes most commonly found in North American cannabis strains, eight of which predominate to form a 'Terpene Super Class,'" explained the study.
The eight super class terpenes identified by this pinnacle study include alpha-pinene, beta-caryophyllene (BCP), humulene, limonene, linalool, myrcene, ocimene, and terpinolene. Higher Learning LV investigates each of these important terpenes in our Super Class Terpenes series.
Read our exclusive summary of this peer-reviewed research study here.
"More than fifty cannabis terpenes are commonly found in North American cannabis strains, eight of which predominate to form a 'Terpene Super Class.'"
Ocimene, one of the eight super class terpenes, is known for delivering an sweet, woody scent and herbaceous flavor that sometimes carries notes of fresh fruity citrus, earth, and forest. This common terpene is a popular food and cosmetics ingredient and is also—similar to other terpenes—employed as an insect repellant.
Like others in the super class category, ocimene is one of the most common terpenes in cannabis/hemp/marijuana. Like other cannabis terpenes, ocimene is never encountered in isolation in the wild. Instead, it combines with many other terpenes (and other chemicals, including esters and ketones) to produce unique and multi-layered fragrances that are characteristics of particular cultivars and individual plants.
Basil leaves are a top source of ocimene
This terpene is produced by many botanical species beyond cannabis, including basil, bay leaves, kumquats, mango, mint, orchids, oregano, parsley, pepper, tarragon, and wild carrots.
Ocimene can be found in a number of cannabis cultivars (strains), including Amnesia, Clementine, Dream Queen, Dutch Treat, Golden Goat, Golden Pineapple, Green Crack, J1, Purple Princess, Purple Urkle, Sour Diesel, Space Queen, Strawberry Cough, Strawberry Haze, and Trainwreck.
Clementine is noted as being an especially good source of this terpene, although genetic influences and variances in environment can change the volumes and ratios of the terpenes and cannabinoids produced by any cultivar. Despite its presence in these cultivars, ocimene rarely plays a lead in their terpene profiles.
"Ocimene is produced by botanical species beyond cannabis, including basil, bay leaves, kumquats, mango, mint, orchids, oregano, parsley, pepper, tarragon, and wild carrots."
Like other terpenes and cannabinoids, research has revealed that ocimene features multiple avenues of efficacy and may act as a positive therapeutic agent for a number of diseases and conditions. Ocimene's potential medicinal benefits include efficacy against conditions based in inflammation. Its antiviral and antifungal powers may make it of value in several medicinal applications. Research has also revealed potential antioxidant benefits and that conditions such as cancer and diabetes may benefit.
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