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In his illuminating history of corporate research, Paul Lucier repeats the common mistake of calling Genentech the first biotechnology firm (Nature574, 481–485; 2019). Cetus was founded five years earlier, in 1971, by Nobel-prizewinner Donald Glaser and others. It initially developed microbial processes for producing chemical feedstocks, including propylene oxide and antibiotic intermediates. The corporation later pivoted to therapeutics.