ARTICLE ABSTRACTT-cell responses may be shaped by sterile “danger signals” that are constituted by damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMP). However, whether and what type of adaptive immune responses are triggered in vivo by DAMPs induced by tumor progression are not well characterized. In this study, we report that the production of HMGB1, an established DAMP released by dying cells, was critical for tumor progression in an established mouse model of prostate cancer. HMGB1 was required for the activation and intratumoral accumulation of T cells that expressed cytokine lymphotoxinα1β2 (LT) on their surface. Intriguingly, these tumor-activated T cells recruited macrophages to the lesion and were essential to promote the preneoplasia to invasive carcinoma in an LTβ receptor (LTβR)-dependent manner. Taken together, our findings suggest that the release of HMGB1 as an endogenous danger signal is important for priming an adaptive immune response that promotes malignant progression, with implications for cancer prevention and therapy. Cancer Res; 73(2); 629–39. ©2012 AACR.