Borneol – Terpenes and Cannabinoid Research

Borneol Research Dashboard


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CannaKeys has 101 studies associated with Borneol.

Here is a small sampling of Borneol studies by title:

Components of the Borneol Research Dashboard

  • Top medical conditions associated with Borneol
  • Proven effects in clinical trials for Borneol
  • Receptors associated with Borneol
  • Individual study details for Borneol

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Overview - Borneol

What is Borneol?

Borneol is a minor terpene in cannabis and is more abundantly found in turmeric, thyme, and ginger, for example.

It is a compound frequently used in Traditional Chinese Medicine as an analgesic and sold in old pharmacies as a dry powder.

Rowantinex is an over-the-counter terpene formula high in pinene, camphene, and borneol.

Recent research elucidates borneol’s potential role as a drug-delivery enhancer via improved blood-brain barrier permeation of drugs for treating ischemia and Alzheimer’s Disease with synergistic effects.

It may also help drugs cross mucous membranes and skin.

Is Borneol safe?

Borneol appears as a white-colored lump-solid with a sharp camphor-like odor. Burns readily. Slightly denser than water and insoluble in water.

Concentrated borneol is a pale, white, lump-like solid. Isolated and concentration-dependent borneol is very toxic, with a probable lethal dose of 50-500 mg/kg. This is roughly one teaspoon to one ounce for a 70kg (150lb) person.


Other Names

IUPAC Name: (1R,2S,4R)-1,7,7-trimethylbicyclo[2.2.1]heptan-2-ol


Scent Description

Woody, camphor, herbal

Natural Sources

Turmeric, thyme, rosemary, ginger

Cannabis Strains High in Borneol

Golden Haze, K13 Haze, Sour Diesel, OG Kush, CBD Skunk Haze, Afghan Kush, Chocolope, Purple Kush, Lemon Skunk

Borneol Properties and Effects

Borneol may have the following properties and effects:

  1. Analgesia 

    1. Anti-inflammatory pain (S. Bansod et al., 2021)

  2. Anti-asthmatic (Jin-Ya Wang et al., 2021)

  3.  Anti-cancer

    1. Synergistic with 5-Fluorouracil (Jui-Feng Lin et al., 2021)

    2. Synergistic with Mitoxantrone (R. Yang et al., 2021)

  4. Anti-epileptic

  5. Anti-inflammatory

  6. Anti-hypertensive (M. Luz et al., 2022)

  7. Antimicrobial

    1. Antibacterial (middle ear infection) (S. Liu. 1990)

    2. Synergistic with antibiotic ciprofloxacin (against S. aureus) (N. Leite-Sampaio et al., 2022)

  8. Antioxidant (S. Bansod et al., 2021)

  9. Anxiolytic

  10. Cardio-protective (D. Han et al., 2022)

  11. Neuroprotective (Qian Xie et al., 2022)

  12. Penetration enhancing agent (nasal, cornea, transdermal, intestinal, and blood-brain barriers) (Jinxiu Li et al., 2021)

Improved drug delivery through the blood-brain barrier (via adenosine receptors)

Rowantinex (i.e., capsules containing pinene, camphene, cineol, fenchone, borneol, and anethole) may increase the expulsion of renal stones after shock-wave lithotripsy (via antispasmodic activity on the smooth muscle in animal models)

Potentially improve cancer treatment outcomes (via regulating ROS-mediated oxidative damage, MAPKs and PI3K/AKT pathway in human glioma cells, and regulation of HIF-1a expression via mTORC1/eIF4E pathway)

Preclinical anti-hypertensive and vasorelaxant effects improve mice's autonomic impairment and baroreflex dysfunction.

In combination with Tanshinol, borneol may be therapeutic for pressure overload-induced cardiac hypertrophy with anti-atherosclerotic and anti-inflammatory effects (via regulating the mTOR/β-TrcP/NRF2 signal pathway)

Ameliorated post-ischemic myocardial inflammation (via modulating MAPK, PI3K/AKT, and PPAR pathways in the compound drug CDDP)

It may help simultaneously treat neuropathic pain and possibly prevent analgesic tolerance (via co-targeting NMDAR downstream signaling, GABAA receptors, blocking TRPA1 in the spinal cord, and reducing prostaglandin E-2 levels)

GABA-A receptor activity may also explain anxiolytic, sedative, and antiepileptic properties in mice

May ameliorate cerebral ischemia nerve damage through multiple mechanisms (via inhibition of neuronal excitotoxicity, blocking of Ca2+ overload, resistance to reactive oxygen species injury in the acute ischemic stage, antagonizing blood-brain barrier injury, intervention in inflammatory reactions, prevention of neuron excessive death, and promote neurogenesis and angiogenesis in the treatment of ischemic stroke)

May have anticoagulant activities and improve energy metabolism.

Last reviewed by Dr. Abraham Benavides, M.D., 03-05-2022

Borneol Receptor Binding

Endocannabinoid System (ECS) and Borneol:

  1. CB1 (agonist) (N. Raz et al., 2023)

Endocannabinoidome (eCBome) and Borneol:

  1. TRPA1

  2. TRPM8

  3. GABAA (blocking)


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Information on this site is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over-the-counter medication is also available. Consult your physician, nutritionally oriented health care practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications.