Intestinal barrier dysfunction occurs following hemorrhagic shock and resuscitation (HS/R). High-mobility group B1 (HMGB1) has been shown to increase the permeability of Caco-2 human enterocyte-like epithelial monolayers in vitro. In this study, we found that serum concentrations of HMGB1 were higher in blood samples obtained from 25 trauma victims with hemorrhagic shock than in 9 normal volunteers. We also studied whether treatment with anti-HMGB1 antibody can ameliorate HS/R-induced gut barrier dysfunction in mice. Animals were shocked by withdrawal of blood to maintain mean arterial pressure at 25 to 30 mmHg for 2 h. After resuscitation with shed blood plus Ringer's lactate solution, the mice were treated with either anti-HMGB1 antibody or nonimmune rabbit IgG. Serum HMGB1 concentrations were significantly higher in trauma victims than control mice. Treatment with anti-HMGB1 antibody improved survival at 24 h and ameliorated the development of ileal mucosal hyperpermeability to FITC-labeled dextran. At 24 h after HS/R, treatment with anti-HMGB1 antibody decreased bacterial translocation to mesenteric lymph nodes and was associated with lower circulating concentrations of IL-6 and IL-10. These data support the notion that HMGB1 is a mediator of HS/R-induced gut barrier dysfunction and suggest that anti-HMGB1 antibodies warrant further evaluation as a therapeutic to ameliorate the morbidity of HS/R in trauma patients.