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Death Sentence No Longer a Given for Patients With Cancer

Nathan Schwegman was just 25 when his doctor told him he had a 3 percent chance of surviving the melanoma that had spread into his lungs and spine, soon leaving him in so much pain he could hardly move.

A month later, in January 2012, he enrolled in a clinical trial testing a new drug from Merck & Co. that was designed to rev up his immune system to attack and kill his cancer. In just two months, the pain started going away. Now he’s cancer free.