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Gen9 announces appointment of Kevin Munnelly as president and chief executive

Gen9 Inc., a Cambridge company developing technologies for synthesizing genes, announced the appointment of Kevin Munnelly as president and chief executive.

Company cofounder Joseph Jacobson had been serving as interim CEO. Munnelly joined Gen9 in September as chief operating officer, a post that will now be held by Martin Goldberg.

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Before joining Gen9, Munnelly was the general manager of a business unit of Life Technologies Corp., a biotechnology company that had sales of $3.7 billion in 2011.

According to its press release, Gen9 was founded in 2009 by Jacobson of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, George Church of Harvard Medical School, and Drew Endy of Stanford University.

In a statement, Church said: “Just as electronics from chips have reshaped virtually every industry, so too will genes from chips. Cellular factories are becoming ubiquitous in the same way that silicon chips are today, and they will be delivering high-value products in every imaginable enterprise. The biggest hurdle in igniting large-scale adoption of synthetic biology has been the time-consuming and costly processes to synthesize genes. Under Kevin’s leadership, Gen9 is poised to create a biosynthesis marketplace with the capacity to efficiently modernize multibillion-dollar industries such as biofuels, enzymes, pharmaceuticals, chemicals — and even electronics.”

Chris Reidy can be reached at
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