The bovine UK and simian SA11 rotaviruses are commonly used VP7-type reference strains. Since the surface protein VP3 is a significant neutralization antigen, it is important to fully characterize the VP3 types associated with current reference strains. Here we present the complete nucleotide and predicted amino acid sequence of VP3 from UK rotavirus (VP7 type 6) and compare it to the published sequences of SA114fm and RV-5. We also compare the deduced amino acid sequence covering the trypsin cleavage region of UK VP3 to 25 other available sequences. The UK protein is clearly different from that of bovine NCDV (another commonly used VP7 type 6 strain) and represents a second VP3 type associated with bovine rotaviruses. Our SA11 sequence differs from that determined by Lopez et al.((1985, Virology 144,11-19; later referred to as SA114fM by Lopez et al. (1986, Virology 154, 224-227)), their sequence being very similar to the published sequence of NCDV VP3. The significance of these results with regard to virus serotypes is discussed. Finally, in analyzing the nucleotide sequence surrounding the initation codon, a potential hairpin-loop structure was identified which maybe involved in translational regulation.