The past decade has seen many new MR imaging techniques that have been applied to brain tumor imaging. As MR imaging is applied further to cellular and molecular imaging (e.g., imaging of gene transfer and expression), more possibilities for brain tumor diagnosis and treatment will become evident. The superior contrast, resolution, and lack of need for image coregistration suggest that MR imaging techniques may displace PET as the preeminent modality for studying brain and tumor physiology and chemistry for indications other than receptor-based imaging. Nevertheless, the new MR imaging techniques require further histologic, physiologic, and intraoperative validation in suitable animal models and in clinical studies, and should be used to complement PET. Application of echo-planar imaging and other fast imaging sequences can permit the merger of several MR imaging studies (e.g., perfusion imaging, DWI, and MRS(I) into a typical (1-hour) clinical time slot). Synergistic information provided by these new techniques might soon enable physicians to reach the ultimate goals of noninvasive tumor grading and avoidance of having to obtain a biopsy.