Why cannabis smells skunky
Dec 2021, phys.org
Finally, move over terpenes, the real smell of cannabis is here -- a new family of prenylated volatile sulfur compounds (VSCs), aka "skunk" is found in dank buds.
Of the VSC varieties, 3-methyl-2-butene-1-thiol (VSC3) was the skunkiest. And of the 13 strains of cannabis tested, Bacio Gelato was the skunkiest.
via American Chemical Society: Iain W. H. Oswald et al, Identification of a New Family of Prenylated Volatile Sulfur Compounds in Cannabis Revealed by Comprehensive Two-Dimensional Gas Chromatography, ACS Omega (2021). DOI: 10.1021/acsomega.1c04196
Don't forget that dank smells does not mean potent pot, yet people associate citrusy-sweet-sour aroma with more THC:
Gilbert AN, DiVerdi JA (2018) Consumer perceptions of strain differences in Cannabis aroma. PLoS ONE 13(2): e0192247. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0192247
And, from a separate study, it was noticed that the genetic, terpinoid and cannabinoid profiles of selected strains didn't match their descriptions as either Sativa or Indica. Instead, it looks like people just name them whatever they smell like, sweet for Sativa and earthy for Indica:
S. Watts et al, Cannabis labelling is associated with genetic variation in terpene synthase genes, Nature Plants (2021) DOI: 10.1038/s41477-021-01003-y
Can't leave without this; why does natural gas smell somewhat skunky? It's been odorized on purpose since a big explosion that killed almost 300 people in the 1930's:
49 CFR, Part 192:Transportation of Natural and Other Gas by Pipeline: Minimum Federal Safety Standard, Subpart L: Operations, 192.625 - "Odorization of Gas"
Are Terpenes the New Antioxidants, 2018