This is a passage from an article on a medical discovery:
Humans have made incredible health strides and are living longer lives than ever. Many of the maladies that struck down our ancestors have for the most part been completely eliminated – everything from tuberculosis, to polio to malaria.
I wasn't sure what stride means mentioned above so I looked it up on OALD and it defines it as:
3 - an improvement in the way something is developing
But what does develop mean in this definition? I have a vague idea of what it means, but just can't seem to put it into words. I've looked up both AHDE and Dictionary.com, but out of the many senses it provides, none of them seems to fit the context.