The Absolution Virus was a gaseous substance created by Holden Radcliffe. Whenever a human is exposed to this mist, they undergo a form of Terrigenesis that converts them into a Primitive creature that is instantaneously swayed by Hive.
During his quest to transform all humans into Inhumans, Hive captured renowned scientist Holden Radcliffe in order to recreate the Kree experiment which had created the Inhumans. In an early attempt at this experiment, Radcliffe injected a mixture of Terrigen Crystals and Hive's parasites into a group of test subjects, hoping to both transform and sway the humans at once. However, this version of the pathogen proved to be deadly, as the three subjects horrifically melted away as their bodies burst open.
Upon this failure, Hive realized that the mixture required Kree blood in order for a test subject's body to be compatible with the forced introduction of the Terrigen. To that end, the dark Inhuman summoned a group of Kree Reapers to Earth and neutralized them, giving Radcliffe the necessary components to perfect the formula. However, while Radcliffe drained the Kree of its blood, S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Alphonso Mackenzie disintegrated the Reaper's body, preventing the scientist from retrieving the necessary amounts of blood. As Radcliffe attempted to correct the mishap, Daisy Johnson revealed that she possessed the necessary chemicals, as she had once been injected with a drug derived from Kree blood. 
Trials and Perfection
Upon arriving at a new test facility, Hive and Hellfire departed for Washington, where they captured a group of Watchdogs for experimentation. Meanwhile, Radcliffe began the procedure of draining Johnson's blood. After retrieving the necessary amount for a test, Radcliffe perfected the formula as Hive locked the Watchdogs in a shipping container for the experiment. The scientist then began releasing a cloud of the Terrigen, Kree blood and Hive's parasites into the container, causing the prisoners to scream in agony from the exposure. In the aftermath, the container was opened, revealing a group of hideous, deformed monsters in place of the humans. Although Radcliffe was visibly disappointed and horrified at the results, Hive was satisfied by his new obedient army and ordered Radcliffe to create more. The doctor began draining more of Johnson's blood and continued mixing his new formula, creating enough of the pathogen to fulfill Hive's quest for control. 
With the completion of the pathogen, Hive placed the virus inside of a nuclear warhead with the intention of transforming millions of humans into Primitives. With Giyera and Hellfire, Hive led an attack on a United States Armed Forces missile silo, capturing it and attaching the warhead to a rocket. The group began the launch sequence, ready to convert the world into the monstrous creatures. However, S.H.I.E.L.D. led an attack on the base, successfully shutting down the rocket and capturing Hive. However, Giyera and Hellfire fled the base and used a helicopter to disconnect the nuclear warhead from the rocket and escape.
While S.H.I.E.L.D. began to celebrate their temporary victory, Giyera sent a false shipment of mechanical parts to the Playground, but in reality, it contained a bomb containing the remaining quantity of the pathogen. He detonated the explosive, releasing the mist throughout the hangar of the base and transforming at least 28 agents into Primitives. Giyera and Hellfire arrived at the base, and along with a revived Hive, they loaded their warhead onto the Zephyr One and took off to disperse the pathogen.
As the aircraft began ascending into the atmosphere, S.H.I.E.L.D. boarded the craft and began fighting to regain control. With no safe way to prevent the detonation of the warhead, the agents decided to launch a Quinjet to outer space with the warhead inside to prevent the transformation of millions. Daisy Johnson immediately loaded the warhead onto the jet and set the controls to outer space. However, Hive arrived, hoping to prevent her from ruining his plans. Lincoln Campbell immediately followed, fried the manual controls and knocked Johnson out of the Quinjet. The jet took off, with Campbell, Hive and the warhead inside. After reaching outer space, the warhead detonated, incinerating both passengers. The expulsion of the virus dispersed the inactive pathogen harmlessly across the upper atmosphere, preventing it from creating any more Primitives. 
Exposure to the virus immediately induces an altered form of Terrigenesis in Humans, causing them to drastically transform into an Inhuman subspecies called Primitives. Victims are instantly swayed by Hive, rendering them completely obedient and subservient to the dark Inhuman. This transformation severely disfigures its victims, morphing their bodies into a horrific, nearly featureless state. Primitives are unable to speak or demonstrate emotions, having been rendered mindless by the transition. However, the pathogen grants its victims superhuman strength and infrared sensory, allowing them to hunt down and eliminate targets with ease. Despite becoming simple-minded creatures, Primitives also retain any previous skills and abilities they possessed before their transformation. 
- Kree Blood: The blood of this alien species was extracted from deceased Kree Reapers and Daisy Johnson, who had received the GH.325 drug into her bloodstream. The Kree blood altered human genes upon exposure, allowing the subject to undergo transformation without horrifically dying in the process.
- Terrigen Crystals: A type of crystal that releases the Terrigen Mist, which causes some Inhumans to undergo Terrigenesis and unlock their hidden genetic potential. This crystal induced Terrigenesis in the victims of the pathogen, transforming them into the Primitives.
- Hive's Parasites: The parasitic organisms that make up the Inhuman Hive. Upon contact with Inhumans, they attach to the victims' nervous system, producing a direct link with Hive. After victims of the pathogen undergo Terrigenesis, the parasites instantly sway them, allowing Hive to control and direct the new Primitives.
- In the comics, Humans can be transformed into Alpha Primitives by the Xerogen Mist, a corrupted version of the Terrigen Mist created by the Kree to protect the Inhumans against the humans.