Russia is a traditional powerhouse of athletics and finished second behind the United states in the medal table at the 2012 Olympics, with 17 medals, eight of them gold. In the event, by no means certain, that IAAF were to adopt the commission's recommendation, Russia could be excluded from major competitions including the Olympics and Europan Championships.
The scandal revolves around accusations that money was demanded from top athletes to 'bury' medical tests showing drug use.
The scandal could prove as damaging to world athletics as the corruption affair now shaking soccer's world governing body FIFA, where president Sepp Blatter has been suspended and 14 officials and marketing executives indicted on corruption charges.
There has never been any suggestion that FIFA corruption has affected results on the pitch, at the World Cup, for example.
A co-author of the commission report, Richard McLaren, said at the weekend its investigation showed a whole different scale of corruption in causing "significant changes to actual results and final standings of international athletics competitions."