Cannabis has long lived under the shadow of stigmatization. However, it’s no longer viewed as an evil substance. Given its therapeutic benefits and increased popularity, cannabis is now seen under a different light. Interestingly cannabis is a unique compound in itself and scientists from all over the world are seeking answers behind its unique nature. Like cannabis interaction with the endocannabinoid system and its stark molecular resemblance to the natural receptors present inside the human body. Also, it is no surprise that more and more people are getting a medical marijuana card to avail of cannabis benefits. Especially now that 33 + states have legalized medical marijuana.
Interestingly, amidst cannabis popularity, there is one little thing that is gaining maximum attention these days – cannabis terpenes. They are responsible for all the flavor-related aspects of cannabis plants. However, little do people know that besides THC and CBD, there are other compounds like terpenes which are equally responsible for health benefits. So, we will today look at one such terpene. It is one of the abundant terpenes and you will learn all about Humulene in this post.
What is Humulene?
Humulene also termed as sesquiterpene, plays a vital role in protection against diseases and pests. Humulene is highly aromatic and they provide different strains with its unique aroma and taste. Scientifically speaking, the atoms in humulene have a ring-like arrangement. The formation consists of eleven atoms and this molecule in entirety is an isomer of beta-caryophyllene. Its chemical formula is C15H24. This also means that the atom comes with the same molecular formula but a different structure. Also, indicative of the fact that humulene has different properties that account for its other identification – alpha-caryophyllene.
Research on Humulene
Research suggests that humulene has potential health benefits. Some of them are anti-inflammatory, however, these studies are based on extracts from other plants than cannabis. One of the most utilized species of plants in these experiments is called Cordia Verbenaceae or Black Sage. Part of the reason for less research is terpenes low presence and extraction difficulties. This also means that they can be difficult to study. And thanks to the illegal status on the Federal level most cannabis terpenes go through minimum scrutiny. However, now that terpenes have become really popular we may see many studies in the near future.
Potential Health Benefits of Humulene
Despite the lack of research, there are some potential health benefits of Humulene that cannot be ignored. Also, given the popularity cannabis is achieving, you can seek information on terpenes from your MMJ doctor. But first, let us take a look at some of the health benefits and learn more about Humulene as cannabis infamous terpene.
Three studies were conducted consecutively on cannabis terpenes. We will look at each study year-wise. A 2007 study published in the European Journal of Pharmacology showed that humulene is capable of reducing inflammation. Although the experiment was carried out on mice, yet, scientists concluded that terpene can be an important tool in the management of anti-inflammatory conditions. Another study was carried out in 2008 and it found that alpha-humulene can alleviate anti-inflammation whether consumed orally or administered as a topical. One again in 2009 another study showed the anti-inflammatory effects of this terpene. This means that humulene can be a potential treatment for anti-inflammatory conditions.
As discussed at the beginning of the post, humulene definitely protects the plant from diseases. This also means that it is no surprise humulene has antibacterial properties. Now, a 2006 study found out that balsam fir essential oil can fight against Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. And the good news is this oil contains several humulene as one of the major terpenes. Nevertheless, this evidence somehow indicates that humulene, after all, can act as a shield against harmful bacteria. But then again the study was based on oils derived from other plants than cannabis, so we have to wait until further research is carried out.
Final Thoughts on Humulene
There is no doubt that the cannabis industry is achieving new milestones. People are purchasing and growing cannabis strains more than ever. In fact, most Americans have a medical marijuana grower license to grow up to a maximum of six plants. Nevertheless, the not-so-famous compound of the cannabis plant is something people industries would love to experiment with and people would love to learn about it. The only roadblock that lies in between is the illegal status of cannabis on the federal level and quantity of terpenes present in cannabis plants. Once more and more research starts cropping up, the world can see what humulene has in store for the world.