Thorpe St Andrew man will run London Marathon to raise funds for research into his partner’s kidney disease

Amongst the many inspired fundraisers tackling this year's Virgin London Marathon will be a Thorpe St Andrew man running the 26 miles for a cause particularly close to his heart.

Lee Glacken, 25, is attempting to raise �1,800 for Kidney Research UK as his partner, Katharine Marks, also 25, suffers from polycystic kidney disease (PKD).

The couple, who live on live on Yarmouth Road, have been adjusting to Katherine's life with the genetic condition since she was diagnosed with PKD two years ago.

PKD causes cysts to grow on the kidneys, resulting in the loss of healthy tissue and preventing the kidneys from functioning properly, and is thought to affect 2.5m people worldwide.

The condition can eventually lead to kidney failure, with sufferers needing daily dialysis or a transplant. Around half of those who have PKD will experience kidney failure before the age of 60.

The condition has, so far, caused Katherine few problems, but the constant cysts have led to one kidney becoming enlarged, and she has high blood pressure. Her sister, Laura, has also been diagnosed with PKD.

Katherine said: 'At the moment it's just regular doctor's appointments and monitoring. The problem is high blood pressure can damage the kidneys even more.'

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The money raised will go to Kidney Research UK, which funds research into PKD, amongst other conditions. Currently there is no cure for PKD, but the growth of cysts can be managed, and drug trials are offering new hope to sufferers.

Katherine continued: 'Lee's quite a fit person anyway, and it would just be such an achievement. The event itself is amazing and the atmosphere will be great.

'It means a lot to me, because it shows that he's supporting me. There's not much he can do, there's nothing either of us can do about the future, so it's a great way for him to support me.'

The marathon takes place on Sunday, April 22, with Lee raising �217 towards his �1,800 target so far. To boost Lee's fundraising, go to

For more information about PKD and the work done by Kidney Research UK, go to

- Are you running the London Marathon? Send us your training photos at, along with your name, age, location, occupation and details of how people can donate to your cause.

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