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The development of a general-purpose robotic system at the Washington University for performing minimally invasive interventions with real-time MR guidance is reviewed. In this paper, the criteria upon which the system was based, and an overview of its components, the design, and prototyping of the robotic manipulator, its control components and their general integration and logic is presented. The human-machine interface and the practice of performing MR-guided interventions are described. It is concluded that when looking into the cost-effectiveness of MR-compatible systems, one cannot ignore the fact that MRI is among the most expensive imaging modalities to acquire and operate.