This report evaluates several methods to map relative cerebral blood flow (rCBF) by applying both parametric and nonparametric techniques to deconvolve high resolution dynamic MRI measurements of paramagnetic bolus passages with noninvasively determined arterial inputs. We found a nonparametric (singular value decomposition (SVD)) deconvolution technique produced the most robust results, giving mean gray:white flow ratio of 2.7 +/- 0.5 (SEM) in six normal volunteers, in excellent agreement with recent PET literature values for age-matched subjects. Similar results were obtained by using a model-dependent approach that assumes an exponential residue function, but not for a Gaussian-shaped residue function or for either Fourier or regularization-based model-independent approaches. Pilot studies of our CBF mapping techniques in patients with tumor, stroke, and migraine aura demonstrated that these techniques can be readily used on data routinely acquired by using current echo planar imaging technology. By using these techniques, the authors visualized important regional hemodynamic changes not detectable with rCBV mapping algorithms.