What is cannabis Terpine Profile Testing?

Terpene Testing

Cannabinoids such as THC and CBD are not the only active compounds found in cannabis. Terpenes have a major role to play in the medicinal and psychoactive effects of the cannabis plant. The combination of cannabinoids and terpenes, as well as other classes of compounds, creates and entourage effect that provides a more full-spectrum experience when compared to a single cannabinoid (like THC or CBD).

Terpenes are produced in secretory cells within the trichomes of the cannabis plant, with individual terpenes having distinctive aromas and/or flavors. Over 200 terpenes have currently been identified in cannabis, and researchers are continually discovering their effects on human health. Understanding the differences between each terpene and assuring that your product is tested and labeled effectively will help you create raving fans.

At Green Scientific Labs we use gas chromatography with flame ionization detection (GC-FID) to separate and quantify 37 terpenes commonly found in cannabis. Some of the most studied terpenes that we test for include:

β - Myrcene

  • Produces earthy, balsamic, spicy, and clove-like odors
  • Most abundant terpene in cannabis - sometimes composing up to 50% of the terpene volume
  • Anti-depressant, anti-inflammatory, muscle relaxant, and pain relieving properties
  • Antimicrobial, antiseptic, antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic effects
  • Higher levels (> 0.5 %) in cannabis produce effects associated with indica strains
  • Lower levels (< 0.5%) in cannabis produce effects associated with sativa strains


  • Produces scent of pine needles or rosemary
  • Medical efficacy includes mental focus and energy
  • Acts as a bronchodilator, making it helpful for people with asthma and other respiratory ailments
  • Antimicrobial, Antiseptic, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties


  • Produces a floral aroma, sometimes with a hint of spice
  • Anti-depressant, anti-convulsant, anti-inflammatory, and pain relieving effects
  • Sedative and sleep aid properties provides relief to those who suffer from anxiety disorders and insomnia.


  • Conveys a smell of citrus (orange, tangerine, lemon, lime or grapefruit)
  • Anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties
  • Effective in preventing cancer cell proliferation and reducing tumor size
  • Antacid effects treats acid reflux (heartburn)


  • Contributes to the spiciness of black pepper
  • Targets the body’s CB2 receptors, ignoring the CB1 receptors that are involved in delivering the euphoric high associated with marijuana
  • Anti-cancer, anti-anxiety, and antidepressant properties
  • Gastroprotective - meaning it can be used to treat ulcers
  • Increases bone mass, helpful to those suffering from osteoporosis
  • May suppress the development of atherosclerosis
  • May be helpful for the treatment of alcoholism


  • Conveys a scent of fresh bark that can be described as “woody” or “fruity”
  • Antibiotic, anti-microbial, anti-cancer, gastroprotective properties
  • Topical treatment for skin lesions
  • Neuroprotective effects derived from its anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory capabilities
  • Nerolidol supplementation is shown improve neurodegeneration associated with Parkinson’s Disease

The remaining list of terpenes quantified include:

Camphene, β-Pinene, Δ3-Carene, α-Terpinene, trans-beta-Ocimene, cis-beta-Ocimene, Eucalyptol (1,8-Cineole), gamma-Terpinene, Terpinolene, (-)-Isopulegol, Geraniol, Humulene, cis-Nerolidol, trans-Nerolidol, (-)-Guaiol, (-)-Caryophyllene oxide, and (-)-alpha-Bisabolol.