High mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) is a ubiquitous protein, released passively by necrotic tissues or secreted actively by stressed cells. Extracellular HMGB1 is a typical damage-associated molecular pattern (DAMP) molecule which generates different redox types through binding with several receptors and signalling molecules, aggravating a range of cellular responses, including inflammation. HMGB1 is reported to participate in the pathogenesis of inflammatory diseases, through the interaction with pivotal transmembrane receptors, including the receptor for advanced glycation end products (RAGE) and toll-like receptor-4 (TLR-4). This review aims to highlight the role of HMGB1 in the innate inflammatory response describing its interaction with several cofactors and receptors that coordinate its downstream effects. Novel and underexplored HMGB1 binding molecules that have been actively involved in HMGB1-mediated inflammatory diseases/conditions with therapeutic potential are further discussed.