The science behind limonene Today’s Video of the Day from the American Chemical Society series Reactions clears up a myth about limonene, a chemical found in the peels of citrus fruits.
Limonene is enantiomeric, which means that is made up of a pair of molecules that have a different 3D arrangement.
Even though these molecules are mirror images of each other, they cannot be superimposed, just like our left and right hands.
It was once believed that lemons and oranges had different odors because they only had one of these molecules.
However, it turns out that these citrus fruits have both limonene enantiomers, and it is a variety of other compounds that gives lemons and oranges their distinctive scents. Limonene, (+)- is an oral dietary supplement containing a natural cyclic monoterpene, and a major component of the oil extracted from citrus peels, with potential chemopreventive and antineoplastic activities. Upon oral administration, D-limonene activates aldehyde dehydrogenase 3A1 (ALDH3A1), thereby decreasing aldehyde level.
The compound is one of the main volatile monoterpenes found in the resin of conifers, particularly in the Pinaceae, and of orange oil. Limonene takes its name from French limon. Limonene, (+)- is an oral dietary supplement containing a natural cyclic monoterpene and major component of the oil extracted from citrus peels with potential chemopreventive and antitumor activities. The science behind limonene as shown above in the video shows the differnece between the orange and the lemo molecule differences.
Video Credit: American Chemical Society