Chemical changes in terpenes of sugi (Cryptomeria japonica) wood during steam drying in kiln at high temperature

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Sawdusts of sugi (Cryptomeria japonica) wood prepared before and after steam drying at 120°C in a kiln were extracted with n-hexane and ethyl acetate to give n-hexane extracts and ethyl acetate extracts. From gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis of the ethyl acetate extracts from woods before and after steam drying, the components of 4-epi-cubebol, cubebol, and 2,7(14),10-bis-abolatrien-1-ol-4-one, which existed in the raw sugi wood, were proved to disappear in the steam-dried wood. These components were also absent in the ethyl acetate extract of the steam-condensed solution of waste steam from the kiln outlet. When these three components were treated with 0.2% (v/v) acetic acid solution at 120°C, δ-cadinene was produced as a major product from both 4-epi-cubebol and cubebol by dehydration and cleavage of the cyclopropane ring, and cryptomerone from 2,7(14),10-bisabolatrien-1-ol-4-one by hydration. The chemical changes of the three components presumably occur during steam drying of the sugi wood.

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