Bhavna Limbachia says her 'Coronation Street' lesbian love affair storyline has "changed [her] life".
The 34-year-old actress and Faye Brookes play lovers Rana Nazir and Kate Connor - who have been dubbed Kana by soap super-fans - and she feels "honoured" to have been handed the plot, because it feels "so relevant".
She said: "This storyline has changed my life to be honest. I feel honoured to be able to shed light on something still so relevant in 2018."
Kana fandom has grown on social media since the storyline kicked off, and Bhavna, who is playing the ITV soap's first ever gay Muslim character, is "grateful" the plot has been able to raise such "important issues".
She added to website I Love Manchester: "Faye and I didn't realise how big the storyline would be, and how big the fandom would grow.
"We are just grateful that we're able to use this platform to raise important issues for the LGBTQ+ community, especially in the Asian community."
Bhavna recently admitted she is keen to educate people with the storyline, and knew the plot would come with plenty of challenges but is determined to get it right for anyone suffering the same problems in coming out due to their ethnicity or religion as Rana has.
She said: "I felt such a huge responsibility to get the story right so I went away and did a lot of research, even though it was a big weight on my shoulders I just wanted to make sure I did the storyline justice.
"The storyline is there not to offend people, it's to educate them, it's to spark conversation so it's there to make people aware that there is support available."