1 DNA Way
South San Francisco, CA 94080
 Synopsis: Business Condition
Year Founded 1976
Employment 12,300
Sector N/A
Industry Biotechnology
Genentech Inc
     Last modified on: 8/26/2013

Genentech Inc., a portmanteau of Genetic Engineering Technology, Inc., is a biotechnology corporation, which was founded in 1976 by venture capitalist Robert A. Swanson and biochemist Dr. Herbert Boyer.[1][2] It is considered to have founded the biotechnology industry.[1][2] One of its founders, Boyer, is considered to be a pioneer in the field of recombinant DNA technology. In 1973, Boyer and his colleague Stanley Norman Cohen demonstrated that restriction enzymes could be used as "scissors" to cut DNA fragments of interest from one source, to be ligated into a similarly cut plasmid vector. While Cohen returned to the laboratory in academia,[1] Swanson contacted Boyer[3] to found the company.[1] Boyer worked with Arthur Riggs and Keiichi Itakura from the Beckman Research Institute, and the group became the first to successfully express a human gene in bacteria when they produced the hormone somatostatin in 1977. David Goeddel and Dennis Kleid were then added to the group, and contributed to its success with synthetic human insulin in 1978. As of March 2008, Genentech employed more than 11,000 people and Arthur D. Levinson was the chairman and CEO.[4] The Swiss pharmaceutical conglomerate Hoffmann-La Roche now completely owns Genentech after completing its purchase on 26 March 2009 for approximately $46.8 billion