Chip Wilson, the founder of Lululemon, is dedicating $100 million of his wealth to combat facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD), a rare and debilitating muscular disease. Wilson was diagnosed with FSHD in 1987 and has since been on a mission to find a cure for this condition, which affects approximately 900,000 people worldwide. He specifically battles an even rarer form, FSHD2, impacting only 5% of FSHD patients.
Despite his diagnosis, Wilson led an active life for many years. However, as the disease progressed, he encountered physical challenges. In 2022, he launched a venture philanthropy fund called “Solve FSHD” with a goal to develop a cure by 2027. The primary focus of Solve FSHD is on finding innovative therapies for FSHD2. The fund has already invested nearly $31 million in biotech companies dedicated to developing interventions for the disease.
Wilson’s approach to medical innovation involves harnessing the resources and entrepreneurial mindset of ultra-wealthy individuals. He believes that the capital generated by capitalism can drive groundbreaking medical research and attract top talent to the cause.
In addition to funding research, Wilson is actively exploring experimental treatments and longevity therapies to combat FSHD. These include electroacupuncture, NAD IV drips, immunosuppressive drugs, and testosterone supplementation.
Chip Wilson’s commitment to battling this rare disease showcases the potential for individuals with vast resources to make a significant impact on medical research and the quest for a cure.