That being said, McMasters said, "In some patients ... vemurafenib offers the hope to shrink the tumors enough to allow [surgical removal]."
So far, resistance hasn't been an issue for Richard Kaminski. Two years into treatment, he continues to enjoy a relatively normal life. He loves to garden, although he does have to take precautions out in the sun since one of the side effects of the medication is sun sensitivity.
"Life is good for me," he says. "I'm really happy these days."
Also, even though results of the trial have now been published, his role in it isn't over. He continues to take the medication and report for medical scans to track his progress and, hopefully, to find out why he's continuing to do so well.
"One thing that I hope we'll find out is why [I'm] responding more than everybody else," he said. "I'm sure [there are] a few other people in my time frame around the country, and I hope they're getting a lot of good information from them as well."
And how does it feel, knowing he's contributing to research efforts?
"That feels pretty good," he said.