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Biology itself is now officially a threat to mankind. High-ranking government officials, senior corporate officers, and experienced biologists all consider the problem in their own way, and with their own people. Their conclusions fall into two camps. Either humans need to be improved, or people need to escape being human.

John Hammond founds International Genetics Incorporated, or "InGen", in 1975. Born in 1913, he has a string of successes already behind him, but he is unable to conquer his real enemy: aging and death.

In 1975, rebel scientist Eddie Jessup experiments with a South American hallucinogen which, in combination with sensory deprivation, causes him to physically revert to a pre-human state. The hallucinogen is derived from a plant called the Sonnentreppe , or "Stairway to the Sun", and also grows in West Africa. The plant is a natural producer of the Progenitor virus, and Jessup's physical transfiguration is linked to his deeply repressed religious mania.

Dr. Raymond F. McMullen founds GenTek on November 1, 1976. He receives funding from the government's Blackwatch organization. The company's purpose is to experiment on the Redlight virus, and to study the research subject Elizabeth Greene.

Also in 1976, aging Nazi hunter Ezra Liebermann receives information that Nazi scientist Josef Mengele has cloned Adolf Hitler 94 times. He is attempting to recreate the Fuhrer's mental state in the clones by carefully shaping their upbringing, culminating in the killing of their adoptive fathers. Rather than using Jelliff's more careful approach, Mengele is determined to achieve quick results before he himself dies. Liebermann is able to track and confront Mengele, and in cooperation with another Nazi hunter, David Bennett, uncovers and dismantles the cloning operation.

Dr. James Marcus, working under Lord Spencer and the Umbrella Corporation, successfully engineers the Progenitor virus into the "t-virus" on September 19, 1977, using Eddie Jessup's research as a basis for understanding its transformative properties. Marcus further experiments with infecting leeches in 1978, but later concludes that humans would be better guinea pigs. The t-virus is a multi-use biological weapon: it can kill and transform a population into ravenous zombie-like creatures, while one in ten million people have the correct genetic potential to mutate into monstrous living weapons called "tyrants". A t-virus victim's mental state influences the mutation, and only humans have sufficiently controllable mental states.

The Umbrella research team responsible for the t-virus work to understand how the anomalous development of extra mass occurs in the bodies of infectees. They conclude that the mysterious "vril" is responsible for the observed effects, and dub the products of the t-virus (and similar life forms) as "VRIL" - Viral/Retroviral Intron Lifeforms. The first VRIL creations - the zombie and a creature dubbed the "Hunter" - show promise as a subset of VRILs called BOWs - Bio Organic Weapons.

Blackwatch's Department of Scientific Intelligence, also known as "The Shop", kills Vicky Tomlinson in 1980. They pursue her family, Andy McGee and his daughter Charlie, who has developed powerful pyrokinetic powers. The pair are captured and separated, with members of the Shop unsuccessfully attempting to gain Charlie's trust. The Shop's senior man and much of the upper echelon is killed by Charlie herself, who also blows up several of its buildings in the process.

In 1979, Dr. Hal Raglan's Somafree Institute of Psychoplasmics demonstrates a revolutionary method of treating patients with psychological issues. Dr. Raglan's method depends on an infusion of modified ADAM, which doesn't require infusions of EVE but can have unintended side effects. His star patient, Nola Carveth, begins spontaneously manifesting her frustrations as deformed dwarfish apparitions who kill the objects her frustrations. Eventually Nola's husband convinces Dr. Raglan of the danger of his approach, and the institute is closed. Dr. Raglan and Nola die, but her daughter Candice (now showing signs of the psychoplasmic condition) escapes.

In 1981, members of Mengele's cloning project join InGen as research scientists. Hammond is interested in their human cloning work, but they inform him that tremendous amounts of capital will be required to create a clone that will retain his personality, not merely resemble him. Hammond begins work on a radical idea: cloning dinosaurs and stocking a park with them as live exhibits. He believes that this will raise enough capital to fund his immortality research. InGen is able to successfully clone a dinosaur by 1984, and a velociraptor in 1986.

The children born after exposure to Ephemerol steadily reach adulthood. All of them exhibit telepathic powers, but also suffer from sensory overload, mental noise, and other side effects of uncontrolled mind-reading. Dr. Ruth dubs them "Scanners", since they are able to scan or make mental contact with other minds, even with computers. Dr. Ruth's employer ConSec is interested in the security applications of the Scanner power. When telepathic terrorist Darryl Revok disrupts a 1981 ConSec Scanner demonstration by killing the presenter, Dr. Ruth recruits Cameron Vale, another Scanner with powerful latent abilities, to track down and terminate Revok. In their final conflict, Revok kills Vale's body, but Vale transmits his mind into Revok, overwriting his personality.

Anna Hart, one of the clones of Brigid Tenenbaum, learns of her existence as a clone in 1982 with the aid of Michaela Dupont, who is secretly also a clone. They confront Henry Jelliff, using Michaela's knowledge of the cloning process in trade for the safety of the Anna clones.

Cloning the body is not enough to ensure immortality. One's consciousness must also find its way into a new host. In 1984, the Rossum Corporation uses their existing position as number one seller of MRI machines to acquire mental maps of people around the world. They have a number of Scanners on the payroll, including Cameron Vale (now in the body of Darryl Revok), and offer psycho-suppressive drug treatments to keep them docile and sane. The Scanners, in turn, aid Rossum's engineers in understanding how to imprint a human mind onto a brain. Rossum develops a combination of magnetic and chemical processes that lead to the first "Active": a human body whose brain is a blank slate, ready to be programmed with a stored mind.

A chemical leak from Umbrella's New York City laboratory occurs in 1984. Some of their mutagenic viral samples infect a small group of turtles in the city sewers, causing significant physiological and mental changes. They encounter a similarly mutated rat, a survivor of the NIMH experiments, who has gained intelligence and martial arts skills over the last decade. The new humanoid-hybrid animals are sought after by Umbrella for their potential as weapons. They are hunted by Umbrella foot soldiers, or "the Foot" - half-alive humans infected by a variant t-virus, good for fighting but not much else.

Over the next several years, Rossum employs down-on-their-luck individuals to function as Actives. The Actives are assigned to "Dollhouses", scattered around the world in highly secretive locations, and deployed on engagements for high-paying clients. They receive synthetic personalities and skills to match the engagement's requirements. Rossum's eventual goal is the development of personal immortality through mind imprinting, and the Dollhouse is a way of building up a base of well-heeled clients and researching the necessary science.

Clyde Randolph is betrayed by one of his business partners at Rossum, and killed, in 1992. His conscious mind is transferred into "the Attic", a virtual reality simulation hosted by the Rossum mainframe.

In the early 90s, Anna Hart is visited by a mysterious man who only calls himself "Jack". He tells her the story of Brigid Tenenbaum, the woman from whom she was cloned. He leaves a package of information for her to read, and a word of advice: "don't just obey. Choose for yourself." Now an adult, Anna has her legal name changed to Anna Zimmerman, and begins the search for the Little Sisters of Rapture. Her search quickly leads her to Blackwatch itself, the sponsors of the cloning program which produced her. With the aid of Professor Bruckner, an expert in cloning who was also aware of Mengele's attempt to reproduce Adolf Hitler via cloning, Anna resolves to rescue the surviving Little Sisters. Her records show that many of them have fallen into Blackwatch's hands and are being used as experimental subjects.

InGen demonstrates Jurassic Park to a private team of scientists and investors in 1993. Due to sabotage of the park by InGen head programmer Dennis Nedry, several dinosaurs escape their enclosures and run rampant across the park. Nedry has been hired by InGen's rival to deliver dinosaur DNA specimens, but he is killed by the very dinosaurs he released before he can leave the island. Despite these serious problems, John Hammond remains determined to make the park a reality. Seeing the pleasure that dinosaurs gave to visitors, including his own grandchildren, he loses interest in immortality research and plans to focus entirely on the Park.

By 1995, Lisa Trevor has been exhausted of her potential to spawn bio-weapons. Umbrella, having lost several personnel to her grief-driven berserk rages, orders her termination. The effects of Umbrella's treatment on her have reawakened and enhanced her Little Sister durability, making her immune to almost any sort of attack. She is left for dead, but is in reality in a sort of suspended animation.

The Motaba virus reappears in Zaire in 1995, motivating USAMRIID (United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases) virologists, other scientists, and members of the military to deal with it. Colonel Sam Daniels and others manage to avert the destruction of Cedar Creek, CA. In the process, Col. Daniels' analysis of Motaba reveals its ties to the Umbrella Corporation, prompting him to look further into the company's history. He confronts Brigadier General Billy Ford, who investigated the original outbreak and helped cover up Umbrella's involvement.

In 1998, both Raccoon City and the Umbrella base in the Antarctic both suffer t-virus outbreaks. The Raccoon City incident is investigated by members of STARS - a program sponsored by Blackwatch to train law enforcement personnel in detecting and combating "bio-crimes" - who discover the Arklay Mountains mansion of Lord Spencer, and are set upon by bio-organic weapons created by the t-virus. Raccoon City and the Antarctic base are both eventually destroyed by nuclear devices to contain the outbreak, and some of the STARS personnel do survive.

During the Raccoon City incident, Anna Zimmerman - who has joined STARS under an assumed identity - finds and rescues Lisa Trevor in the Spencer mansion. While Lisa is horrifically mutated and has been driven to near total madness by her experiences, Anna's resemblance to her long-lost "mother" Brigid Tenenbaum transfers Lisa's yearning for her mother into loyalty to Anna. The two escape Raccoon City's destruction together.

In the mid-90's, the ancient conspiracy Da'ath sponsors Operation Manticore, a program to genetically engineer controllable super-soldiers. They obtain DNA samples from the New York turtle hybrids' blood, which Umbrella managed to secure during its battles with them. With this as a foundation, Manticore begins work on human-animal hybrids for use as soldiers.

In 1999, in an attempt to treat Alzheimer's disease, sharks are genetically engineered to serve as donors for a vital protein. As a result, the animals become super-intelligent. They escape their underwater cages and kill several members of the science team, but are killed themselves. Unbeknownst to the team, the program is a cover for Manticore. From their perspective, they've gained valuable data on human intelligence in a non-human body.

Manticore succeeds in creating the first of their "X5" series human-animal chimeras in 2000.

Type S influenza, also known as the "Reaper virus", breaks out in Scotland in 2008. After a fruitless search for the cure, the entire country is quarantined.

On March 11, 2008, a weaponized form of rabies is released in an apartment building. The CDC establishes a quarantine. Reporter Angela Videl's footage is recovered from the scene, but there are no survivors and the entire building is isolated and purged. Unknown to the public at large, the virus was engineered by Da'ath. Dr. Peter Farragut of the CDC is instrumental in preventing the spread of the disease and performing an analysis of the virus itself.