Extremis (Marvel)

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Extremis is a substance that featured in Marvel Comics.



Extremis was originally created as a supersoldier solution and designed to be a similar to the Supersoldier Serum by providing a wide range of abilities within a single injection. Hypothetically, it was created with the intention of empowering three soldiers with superhuman abilities that would allow them to take Fallujah on their own. (Iron Man: Extremis v1 #3) It was meant to be the catalyst for a new super-soldier program. (Iron Man v4 #25)

The Extremis virus was created at FuturePharm in Texas where it was stolen its developers Aldrich Killian alongside Maya Hansen who had given it away in the hopes that a demonstration of its capabilities would convince the government to re-fund the project's work. A sample of the virus was taken by a man known as Mallen in Bastrop, Texas who took a dose from the enhancible whereupon he was a locked in a room by his companions. After his exposure, the virus began to encase Mallen's body in a scab and granted enhanced powers which he used as a terrorist in the United States. He was eventually confronted by Iron Man but managed to even wound the superhero and continued his campaign of terror.

In order to combat this foe, Tony Stark injected himself with the Extremis drug which healed his wounds and linked his mind to his technology. He in turn was coated in a similar scab for twenty four hours whilst the virus melded his suit into his bones whilst healing his damaged body. With his enhanced powers, he managed to fight and defeat Mallen whereupon the Extremis project was halted. However, the rampage of Mallen had interested the government and attempted to urge for the continuation of the experiments regarding the Extremis Enhancile.

As a result of the Civil War, the Department of Defense fast-tracked Extremis development with this headed by the Prometheus Corporation in order to create a new champion for America's interests. (Iron Man v4 #22) Studies into Extremis revealed that if it was dispersed into the air then the enhancile could become a pandemic that would have killed many due to its current fatality rate. To prevent this, Hansen incorporated programmed cell death (P.C.D.) into the bio-components so that the nanos were rendered inert if they did not come into immediate contact with a host. (Iron Man v4 #24)

Hansen was later kidnapped by Advanced Idea Mechanics where they forced her to recreate Extremis. She managed to escape and a send a warning to Tony Stark but was killed by an A.I.M. soldier. Afterwards, A.I.M. headed a sale of Extremis with Colin-44 offering it as a flexible precise means of creating Homo Extremis super-humans. As Iron Man, he stopped the sale of further Extremis and neutralised the enhancile A.I.M. warriors but learnt that the kit was sold to four other people. (Iron Man v5 #1) A mercenary unit named the Circle founded by a figure called Arthur acquired some of the Extremis for their own use and sought to use it to enhance their warriors to follow the chivalric ideals of Arthurian knights. They established themselves in the nation of Symkaria on the island of New Avalon where they sought to oppose Doctor Doom. They invited Tony Stark to test them where during the duels he ended up using the opportunity to destroy their cache of Extremis to prevent its further spread. (Iron Man v5 #2)

After World War Hate, Stark suffered from an Inversion that changed his personality greatly. This led him to once more examine Extremis where he created Extremis 3.0. He had the creation present as an app that could be downloaded by people where they could change their bodies entirely making them beautiful, perfect and immortal. However, this was only a short run free trial in San Francisco with the upgrades reverting back and Stark making it a compulsory purchase for $99.99 for the re-installation of the app. (Superior Iron Man v1 #1) After a battle with Daredevil, he would later tailor a strain of Extremis restore Matt Murdock's eyesight but this was only temporary with the requirement of regular booster shots in order to force his dependence on Tony Stark. (Superior Iron Man v1 #3)


As defined by its designer, the Extremis enhancile was a bio-electronics package that was fitted with a few billion graphic nanotubes that were suspended in a carrier fluid. Once this supersoldier biological compiler was injected into a host, it hacked the body's repair center namely the part responsible for keeping a complete blueprint of its physiology. This area normally of the braain was relied upon to heal properly following any damage. However, Extremis itself was responsible for rewriting the repair center where during its first stage it turned the entire body into a single open wound. This was because under the Extremis blueprint the body was being taught that it was constructed wrong. Thus, protocol meant that the subject be placed on lifesupport and fed nutrients intravenously. Across two to three days, the subject remained in an unconscious state whilst wrapped in a cocoon consisting of scabs. Within the cocoon, Extremis began using nutrients and the body mass of the subject to aid in the creation of newer, better organs. (Iron Man: Extremis v1 #3)

It rewrote the entire body into something completely new that had enhanced endurance, restorative ability, motor functions and significantly enhanced brain functions. Their brains processed information at light speed with them able to connect random data like a supercomputer. (Iron Man v4 #25)

It offered access and interface capabilities to any high security system which meant more primitive facilities were immune to the capabilities of Extremis. (Invincible Iron Man v1 #9) Enhanciles were incredibly strong, fast, and had abilities such as being able to breath fire with this being described as remarkably cutting edge tech. (Iron Man v5 #1)

A specific genetic sequence determined the survival of a person in the Extremis metamorphosis. (Iron Man v4 #23) Initially, Extremis had a high fatality rate with 97.5% dying from contact with the nano. (Iron Man v4 #24) A study on the psychological effects of the virus on animal subjects indicated individuals exposed to it suffered from paranoia, increased hostility, violent ideation and a tendency towards social isolation. (Invincible Iron Man v1 #9) Superhumans created by Extremis were referred to as Homo Extremis with these being precise, programmable and replicable. (Iron Man v5 #1)


  • Tony Stark :
  • Bruce Banner :


  • Extremis was created by Warren Ellis and Adi Granov where it made its first appearance in Iron Man v4 #1 (January, 2005). It was equipped in Arno Stark's Iron Man Armor allowing him to engage in Extremis A.R. (Artificial Reality) where he sifted through online information with the aid of his A.I. Cynthia. Among his forces also included the Iron-Bots that consisted of Extremis foetal enhanciles that were kept in REM sleep inside A.R. cradles before awakened and placed within a form of Iron Man Armor.

Alternate Versions

  • In Astonishing Tales v2 (2009), Extremis was shown to reside in an alternate future designated as Earth-8410 that was home to Iron Man 2020.

In other media

Extremis biofluid from Iron Man: Armored Adventures.


  • In Iron Man: Armored Adventures, Extremis makes its first animated appearance. Its first appearance comes in the episode "Extremis" where it is referred to as a bio-enhancer containing nano-tubes in a suspension fluid. It was the modern age simulation of the Super-Soldier Serum and studied by S.H.I.E.L.D. when it was taken by failed agent Mallen turning him into a biological combat unit. Upon taking the serum, he went on a rampage and critically wounded Iron Man who was unable to wear the suit anymore as his heart was unable to handle the strain. He later modified the serum to repair his heart and provided him with technopathic abilities that linked with his armor which he used to defeat Mallen. During the episode "Iron Man 2099", Tony Stark attempts to shut down Andros Stark's Hyperpulse Mark IX armor through the use of Extremis. However, the external Extremis control is aborted by Andros's armor who comments that Tony's use of Extremis 1.0 was quaint as he was using Extremis 16.5 which was the operating system used by everyone in 2099. This forces Tony to develop a nanovirus based on Technovore that exploits a weakness in the biotech aspect of Extremis and can shutdown a user of the enhancile for a short span of time.
  • In Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Extremis is mentioned in the pilot episode as being one of the ingredients used to make the Centipede filter where its mixed in a cocktail of Gamma Radiation and Erskine's Supersoldier Serum but was unstable that it caused the user to explode.


  • In Iron Man 3, its shown that Maya Hansen worked on Extremis in 1999 when she met Tony Stark and had a one night stand with him. She showed that she was testing the substance on plants to provide them the ability to self-regenerate but had the tendency to explode. A drunk Stark provided an equation which Hansen used to refine Extremis whereupon she was recruited by AIM who began deploying it to regenerate limbs within amputees and form a number of enhanced soldiers. However, Extremis had a 50/50 chance to rejecting their hosts leading to them exploding which AIM used for terror attacks whilst Hansen intended to get Stark's help to fix the problem.

Video games

  • In Marvel: Avengers Alliance, Extremis featured as an effect and as part of the story setting in the Facebook video game. A.I.M. were involved with the Extremis project and were looking into developing their own supersoldiers. In "Special Operations - Extremis", the Extremis initiative was an umbrella term for a broad program of bio-electronic viruses. Intel briefing later described it as a nanotech-based interface that works with the human nervous system. A.I.M. worked with Hammer Industries in developing it for terrorist purposes.
  • In Marvel Heroes, Extremis made an appearance as an item present within the setting of the MMORPG video game. Extremis Serum B was said to lack the potency of the one used by Tony Stark but it lacked the negative side effects.


  • Iron Man: Extremis: (2007)
  • Invincible Iron Man v1 #9: (2008)
  • Iron Man v5:

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