Glucagon can form water-soluble complexes with phospholipids. The incorporation of glucagon into these lipoprotein particles reduces the biological activity of the hormone. The effect is observed only at temperatures below the phase transition temperature of the phospholipid and results in a decreased stimulation of the adenylate cyclase of rat liver plasma membranes by the lipoprotein complex as compared with the hormone in free solution. Two- to five-fold higher concentrations of glucagon are required for half-maximal stimulation of adenylate cyclase when the hormone is complexed with dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine, dipalmitoyl phosphatidylcholine, or bovine brain sphingomyelin. A possible role of lipoprotein-associated hormones in the development of insulin resistance is discussed.