A U.S. appeals court on Thursday rejected Apple Inc's request to revive its bid for a sales ban on Samsung's Galaxy Nexus smartphone, dashing the iPhone maker's attempt to recover crucial leverage in the global patent wars.

Apple had asked the full Federal Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington D.C. to revisit a decision in October by a three-judge panel of the same court. The panel rejected Apple's request to impose a sales ban on Samsung's Nexus smartphone ahead of a trial set for March 2014.

In October, the court raised the bar for potentially market crippling injunctions on product sales based on narrow patents for phone features. The legal precedent puts Samsung in a much stronger position by allowing its products to remain on store shelves while it fights a global patent battle against Apple over smartphone technology.

Apple wanted the full Federal Circuit, made up of nine active judges, to reverse the earlier findings. But in a brief order on Thursday, the court rejected Apple's request without detailed explanation.

Representatives for Apple and Samsung could not immediately be reached for comment.