Complete Workflow for Comprehensive Cannabis Terpenes Analysis via GC/MS



November 6, 2020

Speaking at The Science of Cannabis 2020 Online Symposium, Rafael Acosta, Senior Scientist from our Platinum Sponsor MilliporeSigma presented his fascinating talk on terpenes analysis using GC/MS. Abstract: Terpenes are a class of compounds responsible for a particular aroma or fragrance in a cannabis flower. As such, determining the terpene profile of a cannabis strain can be of importance due to cannabis customers seeking a desired aroma or effect. It has been proposed that terpenes enhance the therapeutic properties of cannabinoids what is referred to as the entourage effect. As there are no current universal regulatory requirements in terms of terpenes testing this webinar is meant to serve as a guidance to customers developing terpenes analysis methods with their own terpenes analytes of interest. Herein we propose a fast and efficient way to determine the terpene profile of hemp or cannabis flower which utilizes a simple sample preparation based on liquid extraction. This approach minimizes sample preparation time, solvent consumption and reduces time to obtain reproducible analytical results. In this workflow 31 cannabis related terpenes are analyzed via GC/MS in full scan mode using Certified Reference Standards. Tridecane is used as the internal standard as it is not found in the samples and elutes in the middle of the chromatogram. The full scan spectra of the reference standard mix, calibration standards and samples were searched and matched against the NIST GC/MS spectra library. The method can be easily modified and adapted to include additional terpenes of interest and be able to identify and quantitate them with the same approach.

Analytical TechniquesCannabis ScienceChromatographyForensic Science

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