I never paid too much attention to studying the brain while in school, but I found this article very interesting. I remember reading about the hypothalamus and how important it is to the nervous system, but don't remember anything about the striatum.
As I get older I find myself much more interested in how all of this works. I was especially fascinated by how the striatum regulates motivation and rewarding feeling and sensations. I have know a few people who have struggled with Parkinson's Disease and is a very sad process to watch someone go through.