A pharmaceutical startup aiming to treat Androgenetic Alopecia, a type of genetic hair loss, has raised a $4 million funding round that included the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation.

Founded in 2013 by Dr. Houfar Sekhavat and pharmacist Peter Ford, Dieppe, N.B.-based Triple Hair also received approval from European regulators to start the final stage of trials for its flagship prescription spray, Therapy-07, earlier this month. In a statement, Triple Hair said the money will go towards funding that research, with Health Canada approval for the trials having been granted last summer.

Alongside NBIF, the other main investors in the round were Prevail Partners, a life sciences fund out of Philadelphia, and the Quebec government through its Impulse PME equity funding program. In its own statement, NBIF said its share of the raise amounted to $200,000.

“This is an important milestone for Triple Hair, both in terms of securing funding and the recognition of the potential value of Therapy-07 by reputable financial institutions,” said CEO Jean-Philippe Gravel. “These funds will notably enable us to prepare the Phase III clinical trials planned for Therapy-07.”

Androgenic Alopecia can affect both men and women, but is marked by a gradual thinning of the hair that begins in the centre of the head, unlike typical male-pattern baldness, which starts at the forehead and temples. The condition is genetic and caused by the body having an excessive response to androgens — sex hormones.

Previous testing by Triple Hair has suggested Therapy-07 could produce significant hair regrowth in about four-fifths of patients, while established market leaders like Rogaine typically aim to halt hair loss, but do not reliably regrow it. And neither Health Canada nor the U.S. Food and Drug Administration have approved a new topical hair loss treatment since finasteride in 1997.

In July of 2023, Triple said it will eventually need to raise a total of about $10 million to fund the Phase III trials it is now preparing to begin. At the time, the trials were planned to include more than 500 people.

The company, which lists six staff on its website, also sells over-the-counter and natural products, including its Therapy-16 spray, which is branded as RIZN for male shoppers and PLENTY for female buyers.