Reuters Science News Summary

Following is a summary of current science news briefs.

Coronavirus deals blow to NASA's 2024 return-to-moon plan

The coronavirus has dealt a blow to NASA's plan to return Americans to the moon by 2024, as the space agency chief on Thursday ordered the temporary closure of two rocket production facilities after an employee tested positive for the illness. NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said in a statement he was shutting down the Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans and the Stennis Space Center in nearby Hancock County, Mississippi, due to a rise in coronavirus cases in the region.

Fins of prehistoric fish reveal origins of the human hand

Inside the stout fins of a fish that prowled the shallow waters of an estuary in what is now eastern Canada about 380 million years ago, scientists have found what they call the evolutionary origins of the human hand. The researchers examined a remarkably complete fossil of a fish called Elpistostege watsoni that represents a pivotal stage in a landmark event in the history of life on Earth - the transition of fish to land vertebrates.