Insights into the molecular basis of glucocorticoid action have been obtained from the analysis of cortisol resistance. The glucocorticoid receptor (GR) in both New World primates and guinea pigs has a decreased affinity, in vivo, for cortisol; this is achieved by two distinct mechanisms. In the New World primates recent studies have identified a key role for co-chaperones. The amino acids responsible for cortisol resistance in the guinea pig GR lie not in the ligand-binding pocket but on the surface of the receptor. We hypothesize that this region might be the site of interaction between the co-chaperones and the GR, and hence that the resistance occurs through the same mechanism, albeit from opposite sides.