In this study, toxic trace element content of 16 coronary artery plaques obtained from 16 patients with coronary artery disease was analyzed and possible correlations were investigated between toxic trace elements and major component contents of coronary artery plaques. In this regard, meaningful correlations were established between some parameters. In particular, the correlations between nickel and major components of the coronary plaques were noteworthy. Coronary artery plaques primarly consisted of 76.1% fibrous protein, 6.1% total lipid, 1.1 total cholesterol and 5.5% calcium. Lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), nickel (Ni) and aluminium (Al) concentrations in the plaques were 16.5 +/- 9.6, 3.1 +/- 1.3, 22.9 +/- 18.3 and 23.8 +/- 11.5 ppm, respectively.