Cannabis-Derived Terpene Spotlight: Caryophyllene

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In our previous blog, we did a deep dive into cannabis-derived terpenes and discussed the importance they play in our overall cannabis experience. Follow along to learn the unique terpene profile and interesting benefits of Caryophyllene – a rich, pungent compound that may be more familiar to your nose than you’d think!


Terpene Profile: Caryophyllene

Caryophyllene is abundant in many herbs, spices, and even in hops, which is where you may be familiar with its scent and flavor! Essential oils like rosemary and clove will often have this terpene’s aromatic properties. Overall, the aromatic profile of caryophyllene is peppery, spicy, and tingly with a pungent fuel undertone.

Formally known as beta-caryophyllene and casually as simply ‘caryophyllene,’ there is also its counterpart molecule, alpha-caryophyllene. Although both share the same molecular formula, they differ in their arrangement of atoms, making alpha-caryophyllene not as abundant.

Additionally, there are a few details about the chemical makeup of this terpene that make it really stand out among the rest. Caryophyllene is a larger molecule than other terpenes, with a cyclobutane ring in its molecular structure – helping to move hydrogen atoms away from each other in a way other terpenes cannot.

More specifically, this notable trait of caryophyllene’s molecular structure also makes it one of the first cannabis-derived terpenes to be found to directly bind to cannabinoid receptors in the endocannabinoid system (CB1 and CB2 receptors) — thereby creating more potential therapeutic benefits for the body than the average terpene.


The Potential Therapeutic Benefits of Caryophyllene

Considering the fact that this terpene binds specifically to the CB2 receptors in the endocannabinoid system, there are many unique abilities and qualities caryophyllene contributes, including the following:

  • Anti-inflammatory

In health conditions such as arthritis, caryophyllene has been studied to show incredible anti-inflammatory effects.


A 2018 study in the British Journal of Pharmacology proved that a dose between 215 mg – 430 mg of caryophyllene given to both healthy and arthritic rats reduced swelling and inflammation in the lymph nodes.

  • Sleep

Considering how the Entourage Effect proves that many therapeutic effects are strengthened by a combination of terpenes, caryophyllene is known as a sedative when mixed with other similar terpenes.


Caryophyllene is noted to decrease motion and body temperature while increasing overall sleep time.

  • Pain

With its strong binding connection to the CB2 receptor in the ECS, caryophyllene is often used to help mitigate chronic pain or muscle spasms.

One study found this terpene to even enhance the same pain-relieving properties similar to a low dose of morphine.


  • Diabetes & Digestive Health

Many studies have found the terpene caryophyllene to modulate carbohydrate metabolism, which in conjunction with diabetes medication, can help balance glucose levels and overall metabolic rate.


  • Anxiety

Although there are many terpenes notable for alleviating anxiety, caryophyllene (as well as limonene and myrcene) is one of them.

A study in the Journal of Physiology & Behavior concluded that this terpene holds immense efficacy in alleviating the symptoms often associated with anxiety and depression.


Society Cannabis Products Rich in Caryophyllene

Similar to cinnamon, cloves, or black pepper, you’ll notice cannabis strains with caryophyllene because of its pungently funky and spicy warmth to the nose.

Among our wide variety of cannabis flower available at our Massachusetts dispensary, Animal Mints and Mandarin Cookies are just some of the customer favorites that contain an abundant caryophyllene terpene profile. Enjoy these strains for their rich and pungent peppery and spicy flavor that will leave your nose and mouth tingling!

When browsing a specific cannabis strain to help remedy symptoms of inflammation, pain, or anxiety, consider the major terpene Caryophyllene to help you find your desired effects.

For more information on our wide variety of cannabis flower and products, check out our Society Cannabis Co. dispensary menu. Follow our Instagram for more news and content!  


*Always consult a physician before making any changes to your health or fitness regimen.*

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