Porcine rotavirus was shown to infect gnotobiotic pigs and induce an acute enteric disease clinically characterized by diarrhea, anorexia, depression, and occasional vomition. Onset of clinical signs correlated closely with the appearance of lesions within the small intestinal mucosa, and recovery from infection was associated with the regeneration of normal, functional villous epithelium. Villous atrophy, especially in the caudal two-thirds of the small intestine, was the consistent lesion observed in pigs with clinical signs of rotaviral infection. Villi were often short, blunt, and covered with cuboidal epithelial cells. Immunofluorescent microscopy methods demonstrated that the principal site of rotaviral replication was the villous columnar epithelial cells in the small intestine.