The Human Shapeshifters were discovered by Fringe Division when investigating a case. A Shifter killed Robert Danzig, the partner of Lincoln Lee. While investigating the case, Fringe Division dubbed the perpetrator the Translucent Man, as his skin was see-through, much like the effects of the Flight 627 contagion that killed notable people such as John Scott and Morgan Steig. Olivia Dunham and Lincoln Lee tracked the Shifter down to a train yard, where they discovered that there were more than one. While examining the corpse of a shifter that Olivia shot, Walter recognized the data disks from the traditional Shifters, noting that this specific machine was part human. Because the original Shapeshifters were under the employ of Walternate, Olivia took the storage unit to Fauxlivia, who, unaware of their origin, agreed to find out more information about them. It turned out the David Robert Jones was behind their creation. He kept an entire lab full of shapeshifters and demonstrated that he was willing to kill them to incite fear in Fauxlivia. Jones, working with the Alternate Nina Sharp and William Bell, created the Shapeshifters to advance William Bell's agenda, namely a Neogenesis plan that would result in the destruction of both worlds and give rise to a new universe.