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Rotavirus and more recently norovirus have been recognized as 2 of the most common causes of acute diarrhea in children. Comparative analysis of these infections in a birth cohort has not been performed and can provide relevant insight on clinical and viral behaviors.Mother-infant pairs from middle-low socioeconomic background living in the Metropolitan Region of Chile are being followed for 18 months in 2 outpatient clinics. Infants are evaluated monthly for asymptomatic excretion of rotavirus and norovirus and during acute diarrhea episodes (ADE) for rotavirus, norovirus, and bacterial enteropathogens. Severity of ADE is evaluated using the Vesikari score.Between July 1, 2006 and September 1, 2008 a total of 198 children were followed for a mean of 15.7 months. Asymptomatic rotavirus and norovirus infections were detected in 1.3% and 8% of 2278 stool samples compromising 14% and 57% of infants, respectively. Incidence of ADE was approximately 0.8 for the first year of life and approximately 0.6 for the 13 to 18 month age group. Rotavirus and norovirus were detected in 15% and 18% of 145 ADE evaluated. Mean Vesikari score was 10.4 and 7.4 for rotavirus and norovirus respectively (P = 0.01) and severity was not associated with age of patients for either virus. Reinfections were more common for norovirus asymptomatic episodes: 44% versus 19% (P = 0.01) and borderline for symptomatic episodes: 40% versus 11% (P = 0.08). Rotavirus genotype G9P8 and norovirus genogroup II (GII) predominated although most asymptomatic episodes for both viruses were nontypable. None of 19 symptomatic GII norovirus infections had a previous documented GII infection compared with 10 of 31 asymptomatic GII infections (OR = 0. 95% CL = 0, 0.59; P = 0.008).Children had suffered a mean of approximately 1.4 ADE by 18 months of age of which 15% and 18% were caused by rotavirus and norovirus, respectively. In general rotavirus infections were more severe than norovirus infections and for both viruses severity was not related to age. Norovirus reinfections were significantly more common than rotavirus reinfections but for GII norovirus a primary infection seems to confer protection against clinically significant reinfections.