Armed with cash from a spring financing round and a rich patent portfolio, Blueshift Biotechnologies said last week that it is steaming toward a busy first quarter in 2005: The Sunnyvale, Calif., company said it plans to launch IsoCyte, its flagship product for fluorescence-based assays.

2004 has also been a busy year for Blueshift. The biotech startup secured its first private-equity financing in April, developed and sold a prototype of IsoCyte, and forged relationships with a handful of reagent companies that may serve as potential partners down the road.

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