Author Topic: Compounds from Birch (betulenol)  (Read 2675 times)

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Compounds from Birch (betulenol)
« on: December 07, 2003, 11:25:00 PM »
siLENZio has been very interested of finding psychoactive ingredients from common trees - such as birch. He performed simple google search for alpha-betulenol (or beta-betulenol) known as betulin3, the active ingredient in white birch oil (commonly known as birch camphor3), and then and found interesting Russian study

Medline (PMID=8220020)

I don't know is the end product worth of jack shit, but anyway it's great opportunity to go to the nature, get back to lab and refresh ones skills of some basic lab techniques before fooling around with the "more valuable" essential oils  ;) . Besides of that, it's 100% legal (at least technically. My country's law consideres any compound as a drug if one's intention is to get high with it... But that's another story which we can discuss in the law & order  :) )

Left one is alpha and right one beta

The Plan
1. Extract White Birch Oil.
2. Distill the betulenol.
3. Methylate it to get the substituted benzaldehyde.
4. Form the nitropropene/betanitrostyrene.
5. Reduce the nitrocompound with your favourite method.
6. Produce the HCl or monophosphate with your favourite method.
7. Bioassay  ;)  8)

Extraction 1
White Birch oil is extracted from the leaf-buds by steam distillation.
Crude Birch tar is extracted by slow destructive distillation from the bark; this is subsequently steam-distilled to yield a rectified birch tar oil.
There is a study of essential oils in the leaves of mountain birch2, I think it can be applied to the common birches also.

Physical-Chemical properties
Betulenol distills at ?°C and it's molecular weight is 220,354g/mol. The formula is C15H24O.
Note: Betulenol is not Betulin [cas# 473-98-3] C30H50O2, molecular mass 442,7 as the following website claims so:

(this is referred as 3, so I may be wrong about the names. Bit confusing  ::) )



Next time we will play with limonene, 1-methyl-4-(1-methylethenyl)cyclohexene which can be distilled from f.ex. pine oil.  ;)