Technology incubator First Flight Venture Center is getting a post-Easter visit from Congressman David Price.

On April 1 at 10 a.m., Price is scheduled to hear presentations from BaseTrace, a fracking company; BioMASON, a green masonry company; and CertiRx, a developer of authentication technologies.

MOM Delicious and RidgeDiagnostics also will present.

A look at the five companies, with bios provided by First Flight:

  • BioMASON utilizes microorganisms to grow masonry for use in construction. Unlike traditional bricks which are fired in high heat, our products are made in ambient temperatures without the use of fossil fuels and do not emit pollution.

bioMASON uses non-pathogenic bacteria with the ability to create a strong mineral material binder to loose grains of aggregate in 5 days with comparable properties in strength as a viable alternative to traditional masonry products. Bio-cements are economical, viable and utilize industrial waste byproducts.
Our product offers a cleaner, safer and cost effective process for manufacturing masonry pre-cast materials to licensees. 

  • CertiRx Corporation is developing and commercializing proprietary platform technology for authentication and verification of high-value products and important documents.

Counterfeiting and fraud costs U.S. businesses $200 billion to $250 billion annually and are directly responsible for the loss of more than 750,000 American jobs. In the fight against these crimes, CertiRx has patented and patent-pending solutions for: 1) identifying counterfeit goods; and 2) persistently linking physical articles (like certifications, packaging, and critical documents) and the information that they carry to source data in secure digital systems. These solutions have been designed to deliver the highest level of security at the lowest cost, and are broadly applicable across multiple industries.

The pharmaceutical industry has a unique level of risk from counterfeits and fraudulently diverted products, driving CertiRx’s application development funded by the US FDA and the North Carolina Biotechnology Center. A document security solution will be CertiRx first product, addressing a currently unmet need in a highly regulated market, to be announced in April, 2013. CertiRx has a partnering strategy to achieve broadest impact and welcomes related requests for more information.


  • BaseTrace is a North Carolina company developing DNA tracers and tracer detection services for the monitoring of potential contamination around hydraulic fracturing.

The BaseTrace tracer consists of inert DNA molecules coded specifically for each well, using a unique configuration for durability in extreme conditions. DNA evolved as an optimal way to naturally transmit complex information–BaseTrace harnesses this power in a simple, low cost tracer. In addition, each well-specific tracer is detectable at incredibly low concentrations using a widely available and inexpensive test known as PCR. By introducing objective certainty into the hydraulic fracturing process, our technology is designed to put the market to work by internalizing environmental concerns at low economic cost.

Read coverage of BaseTrace in the New York Times ( and the News and Observer (

  • MOM Delicious, Inc. is the next game changer in the $258B US non-alcoholic beverage industry. MOM Delicious tastes great and is more nutritious than any single fruit juice. Early stage distribution is intended for the ‘natural market’ and select grocery chains. Expanded distribution will follow.

Health concerns drive chilled super premium juice sales in stores and in more than 6,200 juice bars and smoothie shops nationwide. Muscadines, native to NC, grow well in former tobacco growing areas. Sandy soil and high humidity cause the muscadine to develop numerous phytonutrients including ellagic acid and resveratrol.

MOM plans to apply to become a Certified B Corporation thru the nfp B Lab. MOM joins many of today’s leading companies in embracing the benefit (B) corporation concept which benefits both shareholders and stakeholders. It is the goal of MOM to make contributions to food banks operating where its contract growers are located.


  • Ridge Diagnostics is a neurodiagnostic company offering its proprietary first-in-class blood test for Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) through its CLIA certified laboratory in North Carolina. Based upon its proprietary Human Biomarker Library and its Biomarker Hyper-Map™ technology platform, Ridge Diagnostics researches, develops, and commercializes multi-variant biological maker assays and diagnostic algorithms to diagnose, select and monitor treatment for Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and other neuropsychiatric disorders.

Antidepressant drugs are among the most frequently prescribed medication in the US today where depression strikes over 19 million adults each year – more than coronary artery disease, cancer or AIDS. For the first time, objective biological test information about depression will aid physicians in the differential diagnosis of MDD, the selection of proper treatment and effective management of their patients.
Ridge Diagnostics started the national roll-out of MDDScore®, its blood test for testing MDD, in March 2013. The sales representatives are experiencing positive response from the doctors.


First Flight is the largest Research Triangle Park technology incubator and is currently home to 37 companies. Over the last 20 years, First Flight has helped launch companies including SciQuest, United Therapeutics and Bloodhound Software.

Price, a Democrat, currently serves on the House Appropriations Committee. He is also the ranking member of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee.