A cycling enthusiast has embarked on a 22,000km cycle from Ireland to China to raise funds for the Leicester IgA nephropathy research group, after a close friend was diagnosed with a chronic kidney disease for which there is no specific treatment.
The money raised by Marcus Gardiner-Hillwill go to the Leicester IgA nephropathy research group, a collaboration between the University of Leicester and University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust whose phase 1 and 2 trials are supported by the NIHR Leicester Clinical Research Facility.
Marcus’s friend Charlie (29) was diagnosed with IgA nephropathy* after taking ill in 2021, and currently needs dialysis for four hours a day, three times a week.
Marcus explains: “I was shocked by this sudden, life-changing event for my friend. So, I decided to try and raise some much-needed funds for the world-leading kidney research happening at Leicester.”
Marcus, who also happens to be the son of renal research manager, Caroline, had been told of the work Professor Barratt and his team are doing to find better ways to manage, and one day to hopefully eradicate, IgA nephropathy, which is a common causes of kidney failure that usually affects young adults. He aims to raise £10,000 to help the team continue their studies.
One year into the journey, Marcus has arrived in India, having completed two thirds of the journey. You can follow the rest of his adventure on Facebook or Instagram, and donate via his JustGiving page.
*IgA nephropathy is a condition that develops when a germ-fighting protein called immunoglobulin A builds up in the kidneys, causing inflammation and damage. It is the most common form of glomerulonephritis worldwide and a cause of kidney failure. No specific treatment is available yet, other than strict blood pressure control. Most people who have IgA nephropathy will need to manage the condition for the rest of their lives. For some, their condition will deteriorate, and they will need to go on dialysis or have a kidney transplant. Unfortunately, a transplant doesn’t guarantee that IgA nephropathy won’t return.
The Leicester IgA nephropathy research group is a collaboration between the University of Leicester and University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust. Its phase 1 and 2 trials are supported by the NIHR Leicester Clinical Research Facility.