A mutant is a type of fictional character that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics. Primarily featured in comics featuring the X-Men, a mutant is an individual who possesses a genetic trait called an X-gene that allows them to naturally develop superhuman powers and abilities. Mutants are members of the subspecies Homo sapiens superior, an evolutionary progeny of Homo sapiens, and are considered the next stage in human evolution.
Unlike Marvel's mutates, characters who develop their powers only after exposure to outside stimuli or energies (e.g. Hulk, Spider-Man, The Fantastic Four et al..), mutants are born with their powers, although they typically don't manifest in the character until puberty.
Like mutates, the powers of the vast majority of Marvel's human superheroes are the result of genetic manipulation by the Celestials millions of years in the past.
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