Citronellol


Citronellol is a colorless oily liquid usually present in the essential oils of Citronella oil, Geranium, Muscatel sage and Sandalwood. The essential oils of Rose, Lemongrass, Tagetes, Neroli, Chamomile, Basil and Lavender also constitutes of Citronellol.

It has also been found that Citronellol is a volatile component of orange juice, bilberry, lemon peel oil, guava, red wine, nutmeg, white wine, black tea, green tea, mango, plum brandy and star anise.

Citronellol is an acyclic monoterpenoid with the molecular formula C10H20O. It is also known by other names, including beta-citronellol, DL citronellol, dihydro geraniol and 3,7-Dimethyloct-6-en-1-ol.

Attributes of citronellol:

Citronellol is a pale viscous liquid with a sweet floral aroma of rose and owns a bitter taste. It possesses a floral rosy and fresh citrus flavor.

It is used as a fragrance enhancer in perfumery as it enhances the fragrances of floral types, especially rose. Because of its aroma and flavour, it is used in cosmetics soaps, shampoos, moisturizers, skin and hair care products, colognes, shaving creams, after shave lotion and bath products. It is used in beverages for its flavor.

Therapeutic uses of citronellol:

Citronellol has antimicrobial, antifungal, antispasmodic and anticonvulsant activities.

Antimicrobial and antifungal activity:

Citronellol exhibit antimicrobial activity against Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus. This was evident from the study “Antibacterial Effects and Mode of Action of Selected Essential Oils Components against Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus” in which the antibacterial activity of the carveol, carveone, citronellol and citronellal against Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus were determined.

In the study titled “Antimicrobial Activity of Essential Oils of Four Lemongrass (Cymbopogon flexuosus Steud) varieties, the essential oils of four lemongrass were examined for their antibacterial activity. Citronellol and citronellal present in the essential oil of Cymbopogon travencorensis is responsible for the potential antifungal activity of the essential oil.

According to the research article “Antifungal activity of geraniol and citronellol, two monoterpenes alcohols, against Trichophyton rubrum involves inhibition of ergosterol biosynthesis”, geraniol and citronellol exhibit potential antifungal activity against the strains of Trichophyton rubrum which causes dermatophytosis.

Anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties:

According to the study named “Effect of Citronellol and the Chinese Medical Herb Complex on Cellular Immunity of Cancer Patients Receiving Chemotherapy/Radiotherapy”, it is stated that citronellol has anticancer and anti-inflammatory and strong antioxidant properties and it promotes wound healing.

When a mixture of Citronellol and extracts from three Chinese medicinal herbs such as Ganoderma lucidum, Codonopsis pilosula and Angelica sinensis given to cancer patients receiving radiotherapy or chemotherapy, there was an improvement in the immune system improving their ability to fight against cancer and any secondary infections caused due to the treatment.

Lowers blood pressure:

Citronellol reduces the blood pressure by vascular smooth muscle leading to vasodilatation. This is evident from the study titled,” Hypotensive and vasorelaxant effects of citronellol, a monoterpene alcohol, in rats” in which citronellol produced hypotensive and vasorelaxant effects in rats.

Analgesic:

According to a study named “Citronellol, a monoterpene alcohol, reduces antinociceptive and inflammatory activities in rodents”, it was found that citronellol is as effective as an analgesic in various pain models in rats.

Treatment of cardiovascular disease:

In the study “Cardiovascular effects of monoterpenes: a review”, thirty three monoterpenes were examined for their cardio-vascular activity and it was found that citronellol is one of the monoterpenes that produced hypotension and tachycardia in conscious rats. It was also able to induce vasorelaxation in superior mesenteric artery of rats.

As insect repellent:

Citronellol is used in insect repellents. It is an effective mosquito repellent at short distances and its effect gradually decreases with increase in distances. It repels the mosquitoes effectively for 1.5 hours when it is combined with beta-cyclodextrin.

Mite attractants:

Citronellol is used on food crops and ornamentals to attract mites, which are an important agricultural pest. So it is one of the active ingredients in pesticides.

Reference Links:

  1. Citronellol by Wikipedia
  2. Citronellol, a monoterpene alcohol, reduces antinociceptive and inflammatory activities in rodents published in the Journal of Natural medicines
  3. Antifungal activity of geraniol and citronellol, two monoterpenes alcohols, against Trichophyton rubrum involves inhibition of ergosterol biosynthesis.
  4. Antibacterial Effects and Mode of Action of Selected Essential Oils Components against Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus published in Hindawi
  5. Hypotensive and vasorelaxant effects of citronellol, a monoterpene alcohol, in rats, published in PubMed and Basic and Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology