O-(2-[18F]fluoroethyl)-L-tyrosine (FET) is a promising tracer for PET that has demonstrated convincing results especially in the diagnostics of brain tumors. In contrast to other radiolabeled amino acids, it can be produced with high efficiency and distributed in a satellite concept like the widely used 2-[18F]fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose. Although FET is not incorporated into proteins, it shows high uptake in cerebral gliomas and in extracranial squamous cell carcinomas owing to increased transport. The tracer exhibits high in vivo stability, low uptake in inflammatory tissue and suitable uptake kinetics for clinical imaging, which indicates that it may become a new standard tracer for PET. In this article, the present knowledge on the uptake mechanisms and the clinical applications of FET are reviewed and the clinical perspectives are discussed.