LONDON — Forty-five more athletes, including 31 medalists, have been caught for doping after retesting of samples from the last two Summer Olympics, the IOC said Friday.

The new cases bring to 98 the total number of athletes who have failed tests so far in the reanalysis of their stored samples from the 2008 Beijing Olympics and 2012 London Games.

Using “the very latest scientific analysis methods,” the latest round of retests produced 30 “provisional” positive findings from Beijing and 15 confirmed positives from London, the International Olympic Committee reported.

The IOC said 23 medalists from Beijing and eight medal winners from London were among those caught.

No names were given.

The IOC’s news release cited 23 medalists from Beijing, but did not mention any from London. However, an IOC spokeswoman, Emmanuelle Moreau, confirmed later to The Associated Press that the London positive tests included eight medal winners.

The IOC stores doping samples for 10 years so they can be retested when new methods become available, meaning drug cheats who escaped detection at the time can be caught years later.

RUSSIAN PRESIDENT Vladimir Putin called Friday for a new anti-doping commission to be created to shape Russia’s future strategy, as the country faces possible exclusion from the Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

Putin’s intervention came as former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev wrote to International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach to oppose a blanket ban on the Russian team, saying that a collective sanction was “unacceptable.”

Putin did not directly address allegations that Russian government officials helped to cover up hundreds of doping cases, but said the state was resolutely opposed to performance-enhancing drug use.

“In sport there is not and cannot be a place for any doping,” Putin said. “Sport must be clean, and an athlete’s health must be properly protected.”

Russian parathletes hoping to compete in this summer’s Paralympics in Rio got some bad news Friday when officials moved to ban the country from the Games amid the ongoing doping crisis.

“This decision was not taken lightly,” International Paralympic Committee President Sir Philip Craven said in a statement. He added that after considering new evidence this week, “the IPC believes that the current environment in Russian sport – which stems from the highest levels – is such that NPC Russia appears unable to fulfill its IPC membership obligations in full.”

Officials plan to announce a final decision the week of Aug. 1.

FULL OF new star power, the U.S. men’s basketball team opened its bid for a third straight Olympic gold medal Friday with a 111-74 exhibition romp over Argentina.

A U.S. team that hasn’t lost a game in 10 years had little trouble with Argentina, which some consider a medal contender in Rio.

Paul George scored 14 first-half points, Kevin Durant added 12, and the U.S. blew open the game early before an appreciative crowd in Las Vegas.

Even with Kobe Bryant retired and LeBron James taking this Olympics off, there was no real talent drop off on a team heavily favored to win gold once again.