LONDON (AP) — Russia has lost its appeal of the ban against its track and field athletes competing in the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport today rejected the appeal by 68 Russian track and field athletes seeking to overturn the ban imposed by the athletics' governing body following allegations of state-sponsored doping and cover-ups.

CAS noted that the decision is not binding on the International Olympic Committee, which has the final say as the organizer of the Rio Games.

The ruling could influence whether the entire Russian Olympic team is banned from the games by the International Olympic Committee.

The IOC says it will study the full CAS decision and make its own final ruling on the participation of Russian athletes "in the coming days." The Olympics open in Rio on August 5th.

Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko says athletes banned from competing in Rio Olympics could go to a civil court.