Real Name: Josephine
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Infectia is a mutant with the superhuman ability to perceive the molecular structure of living beings and to induce mutations in other living beings by altering them genetically on a molecular level. Apparently, she must be in physical contact with a living being in order to induce such changes. In each known instance in which she has mutated another human being, she has done so by kissing him, although it is unclear whether kissing is the only means by which she can mutate humans, or whether she prefers to do it by this means. She has been shown to mutate plants by kissing them.
Infectia can mentally perceive the molecular structure of living beings, and hence can mentally control the mutation process she induces.
Infectia refers to the people she has mutated as her Anti-Bodies. The people she mutates are altered into their new forms within seconds, often growing tremendously in size in the process, accumulating extra mass from an unknown, perhaps extradimensional source. The Anti-Bodies, apparently have little will power of their own, and are subservient to Infectia. The Anti-Bodies Infectia has been known to create have possessed vast superhuman strength, but their power eventually wears off, causing their deaths by disintegration. The more quickly the Anti-Bodies expend their power, the faster they "burn out" and die.
Infectia's power has very different results when she tries to mutate a superhuman mutant. In the one case in which she has tried to do so, the attempt caused an explosion. The mutant Beast, who was affected by this attempt, did not become a monstrous Anti-Body subject to Infectia's will. Rather, the effects of other alterations of his genetic structure and body chemistry were undone, causing him to regain his full intelligence, which had been diminishing, and to regain his furry, bestial appearance. It is not known what effects Infectia might induce in other superhuman mutants.
It is unknown whether or not Infectia can also perceive and mentally alter the molecular structure of inanimate objects.
The woman calling herself Infectia learned a great deal about genetics from her father, a geneticist based in a Manhattan brownstone. As a result she was better able to comprehend the nature of her superhuman power to perceive and alter the genetic structure of other living beings.
Upon her father's death, Infectia inherited the brownstone, the laboratory within it, and a fortune, and thereupon dropped out of high school.
Years later Infectia decided she wanted to take possession of the gigantic sentient fortress airship that formerly served as the headquarters of the mutant Apocalypse and which had fallen into possession of the team of superhuman mutants known as X-Factor. She mutated a policeman into a powerful inhuman monster and went with him to Manhattan's Hard Rock Cafe. There she persuaded two X-Factor members, the Beast and Iceman, that the monster was after her. The Beast and Iceman battled the monster, which disintegrated after expending all its power.
Infectia persuaded the Beast and Iceman to bring her to the fortress ship, where she attempted repeatedly to kiss Iceman and thereby transform him into a creature under her control. However, the young mutants who later became known as the X-Terminators, who were being trained by X-Factor, were suspicious of Infectia and kept interrupting her attempts. The Beast also grew suspicious of Infectia.
Finally, Infectia entrapped Iceman at her home laboratory. She was about to kiss Iceman in order to transform him when the Beast intentionally came between them, intercepting the kiss. There was a great explosion, presumably as a result of Infectia's attempt to mutate a mutant.
Some time ago, the Beast had been transformed from his furry bestial form back into his original human appearance. Later, the touch of the mutant Pestilence, one of Apocalypse's Horsemen, combined with the after effects of the experiment that caused the Beast to return to human form, altered the Beast so that the more he expended his superhuman strength, the more his intelligence decreased. Infectia's kiss reversed all these changes, returning both the Beast's full, high intelligence and his furry, bestial appearance, and putting an end to the process that was decreasing his intelligence.
Thus, Infectia had unintentionally helped the Beast a great deal. Infectia was one of the first mutants to contract the disease known as the Legacy Virus. Although she was tended to by the Beast, he could do nothing to stop the virus. As a last request the Beast took her to the hospital's roof to see the sunrise one last time before she quietly passed away.
First Appearance: X-Factor (1986) #28
View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
The Marvel Encyclopedia (2006)
HC The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (1989)
- 'The Marvel Encyclopedia'
#4 X-Factor (1986)
- 'Human Torch to Mannikin'
- 'A Song of Mourning, A Cry of Joy'
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