Glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored proteins (GPI-AP) with the complete glycolipid anchor attached have previously been shown to be released from the outer plasma membrane leaflet of rat adipocytes in positive correlation to cell size and blood glucose/insulin levels of the donor rats. Furthermore, they are present in rat and human serum, however, at amounts that are lower in insulin-resistant/obese rats compared with normal ones. These findings prompted further evaluation of the potential of full-length GPI-AP for the prediction and stratification of metabolically deranged states. A comparison of the signatures of horizontal surface acoustic waves that were generated by full-length GPI-AP in the course of their specific capture by and subsequent dissociation from a chip-based sensor between those from rat serum and those reconstituted into lipidic structures strongly argues for expression of full-length GPI-AP in serum in micelle-like complexes in concert with phospholipids, lysophospholipids, and cholesterol. Both the reconstituted and the rat serum complexes were highly sensitive toward mechanical forces, such as vibration. Furthermore, full-length GPI-AP reconstituted into micelle-like complexes represented efficient substrates for cleavage by serum glycosylphosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase D (GPI-PLD). These findings raised the possibility that the upregulated release of full-length GPI-AP into micelle-like serum complexes from metabolically deranged cells is compensated by elevated GPI-PLD activity. In fact, serum GPI-PLD activity toward full-length GPI-AP in micelle-like complexes, but not in detergent micelles, was positively correlated to early states of insulin resistance and obesity in genetic and diet-induced rat models as well as to the body weight in humans. Moreover, the differences in the degradation of GPI-AP in micelle-like complexes were found to rely in part on the interaction of serum GPI-PLD with an activating serum factor. These data suggest that serum GPI-PLD activity measured with GPI-AP in micelle-like complexes is indicative of enhanced release of full-length GPI-AP from relevant tissues into the circulation as a consequence of early metabolic derangement in rats and humans.