Primatologist Ymke Warren, 40, had her throat slit after she was bound and gagged when she confronted an intruder at the home she shared with her boyfriend Aaron Nicholas in the coastal town of Limbe.
Dr, Warren escaped the genocide in Rwanda in the early 90s, and then ran the Dian Fossey project studying Cross River gorillas, one of west Africa's most threatened primate populations.
Jillian Miller, director of The Gorilla Organisation in London, said Dr Warren was a highly experienced primatologist who had studied at University College London and Roehampton University.
She said: "She escaped the genocide in Rwanda in the early 90s, and then ran the Dian Fossey project." Dian Fossey was an American zoologist who was murdered by unknown attackers in Rwanda in 1985. She was immortalised in the film Gorillas in the Mist, starring Sigourney Weaver.