What Is Pinene? [Cannabis Terpene Benefits]

What Is Pinene

Pinene is a type of terpene – a chemical compound that many different plants produce. Terpenes have a range of potential benefits for human health, and pinene is no exception.

Pinene is believed to have anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, and it may also help to improve cognitive function. Additionally, pinene is known for its distinctive pine scent. This terpene is found in many plants, including conifer trees, rosemary, and basil.

Thus far, research on pinene is limited. However, the potential benefits of this compound suggest that it could play an important role in human health. Pinene is just one example of the many different terpenes that deserve further study.

In it, we discuss the potential benefits of various terpenes and explore the research that has been conducted on them. We also look at how terpenes are used in the cannabis industry.

What Is Pinene?


As one of the primary constituents of pine trees and other conifers, it’s no surprise that pinene is also a common constituent of many cannabis strains.

This clear, colorless liquid has a piney, turpentine-like aroma and a dry, woody, or resinous taste. It’s been used for centuries for its medicinal properties, and modern research is beginning to catch up.

Pinene has a variety of potential therapeutic applications. It’s a powerful bronchodilator, making it helpful for asthma and other respiratory conditions.

It also has anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects, which can make it useful for treating conditions like arthritis and chronic pain.

α-pinene vs. β-pinene – What’s the Difference?

α-pinene vs. β-pinene – What’s the Difference

There are two forms of l-pinene, the negative enantiomer and the positive enantiomer. These molecules exist in varying concentrations in different types of plants.

For example, the negative enantiomer is more common in European pines. Its positive counterpart, on the other hand, is more common in North American species.

The two enantiomers have different effects on the body. The negative enantiomer is a bronchodilator, meaning that it opens up the airways in the lungs.

This can be helpful for people with asthma or other respiratory conditions. The positive enantiomer, on the other hand, has anti-inflammatory properties.

It can help to reduce inflammation in the body, which can be helpful for people with conditions like arthritis.

Pinene Benefits

Pinene is a terpene that has a range of potential benefits. Some of the current research on pinene and its effects on human health includes:

Anti-Inflammatory Effects

Pinene is a compound found in cannabis that has been shown to have powerful anti-inflammatory properties.

A 2014 study for the Journal of Natural Products confirmed these properties. It looked at the anti-inflammatory effects of pinene on human chondrocytes (cells that produce cartilage).

The authors found that pinene was able to suppress the production of inflammatory molecules, including prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and nitric oxide (NO).

PGE2 is known to play a role in the development of osteoarthritis, so this makes pinene a promising candidate for the treatment of this condition.

Antimicrobial Effects

As well as having a pleasant pine smell, pinene also has some powerful health benefits. A 2012 study found that this terpene was highly toxic to Candida albicans, the fungus responsible for causing yeast infections.

It also had bactericidal effects on methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a type of bacteria that is resistant to many antibiotics. Pinene was found to be more effective against MRSA than the antibiotic vancomycin.

In another study, pinene was shown to improve memory and cognitive function in mice. The terpene was also found to protect the brain from damage caused by stroke.

Antioxidant and Neuroprotective Effects

A 2016 study for Zeitschrift für Naturforschung found that the terpene had a two-fold antioxidant effect. Firstly, it inhibited the production of harmful molecules called reactive oxygen species (ROS). Secondly, it enhanced the expression of several natural antioxidant chemicals. These included:

  • Catalase (CAT)
  • Superoxide Dismutase (SOD)
  • Glutathione reductase (GR)
  • Glutathione peroxidase (GPx)
  • Heme oxygenase 1 (HO-1)

The authors of the study suggest that pinene could benefit the nervous system’s oxidant/antioxidant balance. This, in turn, could help to slow or prevent the development of neurodegenerative diseases.

Other Pinene Benefits

Further benefits of pinene include its potential as a broad-spectrum antibiotic and a bronchodilator when administered in low doses.

However, one of the most exciting pinene benefits is its use as a natural memory aid. Pinene appears to inhibit the action of an enzyme called acetylcholinesterase.

This enzyme breaks down acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter responsible for memory and learning. By inhibiting its breakdown, pinene may help keep acetylcholine levels high, enhancing cognitive function.

A study published in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry in 2016 found that alpha-pinene was able to prevent the formation of amyloid plaques, a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease. These plaques are believed to play a role in the progression of the disease.

The Best High Pinene Cannabis Strains

If you’re looking to get the most out of pinene, you’ll want to find a cannabis strain that is high in this terpene. Fortunately, pinene has a high bioavailability rate – meaning that a large majority of it is absorbed when you inhale it. This makes it easy to take advantage of its many benefits.

Some of the best cannabis strains for getting a dose of pinene include Blue Dream, Haze Berry, OG Kush, Bubba Kush, Chemdawg 91 and Trainwreck.

These strains are widely available in licensed dispensaries in states where cannabis is legal. However, if you live in a place where cannabis is not yet legal, you can still find strains that are high in pinene. Just do a quick online search for “pinene-rich strains.”

When it comes to using cannabis for its pinene content, smoking or vaping is your best bet. This is because when you smoke or vape cannabis, the terpenes are absorbed immediately into your blood stream.

Other Sources of Pinene (Not Cannabis)

Pinene is a terpene that can be found in many plants, including cannabis. It has a number of beneficial properties, such as being anti-inflammatory and analgesic.

Pinene is also thought to improve cognitive function and memory. You can find pinene in a range of other plants and their essential oils, including lime peel oil, rosemary oil, and eucalyptus oil.

Forest bathing, or shinrin-yoku, is a popular activity in Japan that is thought to have many health benefits. The air in forests is rich in terpenes such as pinene, and walking and exercising in these areas is potentially therapeutic.

Coupled with the fact that cannabis is also high in pinene, it seems clear that spending time around plants with this terpene could improve your health.

Research suggests that forest bathing has many potential benefits. These include improving immune function and cardiovascular health, aiding mental relaxation, and relieving respiratory disorders.

It may also prove useful for people with mood disorders such as stress, anxiety, and depression.

Does Pinene Cause Side Effects?

Overall, the evidence to date suggests that both α-pinene and β-pinene are non-mutagenic and non-toxic. This means that they are not likely to cause any damage to the cells in your body, and they are safe for use in human food and cosmetics.

So, if you’re looking for an essential oil that has a refreshing pine scent, pinene is definitely a good option.

When it comes to the safety of pinene, the research is fairly limited. However, what little evidence is available suggests that this essential oil is non-mutagenic and non-toxic.

This means that it doesn’t cause any damage to the cells in your body, and it is safe for use in human food and cosmetics. So, if you’re looking for an essential oil that has a refreshing pine scent, pinene is definitely a good option.

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