Science Terpene Thursday

Terpene Spotlight Pulegone

testing lab
Cara Wietstock
Written by Cara Wietstock

This monoterpene is commonly used in the perfume industry for its sweet peppermint aroma. Though it exists in cannabis is does only occur naturally in small volumes in the plant’s flowers. It is also commonly used to flavor food & dental products as well as an aromatherapy agent. High concentrations of Pulegone can be found in rosemary, an herb whose nerve facilitation can help reduce stress. There are many therapeutic uses for mint as well, another herb that commonly contains Pulegone.

Pulegone is commonly found in:

  • Creeping Charlie
  • Mentha longifolia
  • Rosemary
  • Pennyroyal
  • Peppermint
  • Catnip (Nepeta cataria)
  • Japanese catnip (Schizonepeta tenuifolia)
  • Bursera graveolens

terpeneTherapeutically mint essential oil has been used to treat symptoms of the common cold and gastrointestinal issues. Some studies have also shown Pulegone to be a great insecticide and one study actually showed that thyme and basil plants exposed to grazing animals produced more Pulegone in a response to being eaten(1). Many people report that after inhaling the terpene they experience strong sedative and calming effects. Some college students even believe that it helps them focus and release any anxiety before a big test.

Studies and trials have shown Pulegone to be:

  • Expectorant
  • Insecticide
  • Sedative

Do be aware that when consumed at high volumes in the form of pennyroyal tea the result was death. Some research also showed pennyroyal tea to be an abortifacient, so pregnant women please refrain from experimenting with Pulegone.

Molar mass: 152.24 g·mol−1
Formula: C10H16O
Boiling point: 224 °C (435 °F; 497 K)
Density: 0.9346 g/cm3
Appearance: Colorless oil
Solubility in water: Insoluble
1. Muller-Schwarze D, Thoss V; J Chem Ecol 34 (11): 1377-81 (2008)

About the author

Cara Wietstock

Cara Wietstock

Cara began working in the retail cannabis industry of San Francisco, CA in 2011 and continued in that sector for years. In 2015 she dedicated herself to writing full-time. Her passion for the written word and deep respect for the healing properties of the plant have brought her to Terpenes and Testing magazine. She now helps keep us on the cutting edge of scientific cannabis discovery as the Editor-in-Chief of the print publication.

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