BACKGROUND: Aseptic meningitis is a common illness of children. It seems that viruses are the usual etiologic agents. The distribution of these agents mainly depends on the isolated time and region area. This study was performed to isolate the causative viruses from patients with aseptic meningitis in Gwangju area during recent one year. METHODS:A total of 130 patients with aseptic meningitis were evaluated. Stool and/or cerebrospinal fluid specimens from patients were inoculated into rhabdomyosarcoma (RD), HEp2 and Vero cell lines. The virus propagation was examined by the presence of cytopathic effects. Neutralizing tests using enterovirus serum pool were done on each viral isolates. RESULTS: The isolation rate of enterovirus was 24.6% (32/130). The enterovirus isolates were obtained mostly from stool specimens (29/32). Twenty-two isolates were identified by neutralizing test. Ten isolates disclosed 'untyping' by neutralizing test. The distribution of isolates was coxsackievirus group B2 (11 stains, 34.4%), echovirus 30 (4 strains, 12.5%), echovirus 6 (3 strains, 9.4%), echovirus 9, 11, 25 and coxsackievirus group A16 (1 strain, respectively). These strains were predominantly isolated during summer season (June to July). CONCLUSIONS: The causative viruses from patients with aseptic meningitis in Gwangju area during recent 1 year were coxsackievirus group B2, echovirus 30, 6, 9, 11, 25 and coxsackievirus group A16 which were mostly isolated from stool specimens in summer season.